An application for the licensing of the scheme was earlier submitted to the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and accepted on 16 August.

Toby Freeman of Pacificorp said the FERC licensing process was rigid and had to be followed, but indicated that other processes would be considered.

‘We plan to work through FERC’s standard process, but we have often stated and continue to believe that a settlement process outside of FERC licensing could be far more productive.’

In a statement, Pacificorp said FERC’S licensing process was not flexible enough when stakeholders in a river basin had different beliefs about future outcomes of hydro projects. Pacificorp might develop a multi-party agreement for FERC to consider for the Klamath project’s new license.

The Klamath collaborative has since 2000 brought together federal, state and local governments, native tribes and environmental groups to better understand the scheme’s impacts.

Judi Johansen, Pacificorp president and CEO said the company intended to be a constructive partner in upcoming settlement discussions.

‘Although the Klamath is extremely complex, we believe that a constructive, creative settlement process among responsible participants will bring about a positive, long-lasting outcome for the project and for the Klamath river,’ said Johansen.

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