US$300M Lewis river settlement agreed

2 December 2004

Negotiations had been ongoing for five years between the owners of the dams and native American tribes, federal and state resources agencies, three counties and environmental groups. Pacificorp, which owns the Merwin, Yale and Swift no. 1 dams - that together generate 510MW - is investing US$290M and Cowlitz, which owns the 70MW Swift no. 2, are investing US$19M towards future improvements.

The settlement includes plans for fish passage systems that would transport fish around the dams while surface collectors guide juvenile fish for transport downstream. Hatchery fish would initially be used to kick-start the reintroducion programme. Over time, as naturally produced fish increase in numbers, hatchery supplementation would be tapered off.

Up to US$12M is to be spent protecting and enhancing wildlife habitats for a broad range of big game and other species in the Lewis river watershed. Recreation along the river is to receive a US$20M boost, with improvements planned for parks and day-use facilities. There will also be a focus on flood management, with PacifiCorp agreeing to pay US$25,000 for a new automated notification system for residents.

‘Each of the Lewis river settlement parties can be proud of this agreement,’ Washington Governor Gary Loke said in a statement issued by Pacificorp. ‘This will ensure long-term, substantial benefits for the natural resources of the Lewis river, while preserving a much needed source of electricity.’

Privacy Policy
We have updated our privacy policy. In the latest update it explains what cookies are and how we use them on our site. To learn more about cookies and their benefits, please view our privacy policy. Please be aware that parts of this site will not function correctly if you disable cookies. By continuing to use this site, you consent to our use of cookies in accordance with our privacy policy unless you have disabled them.