aquatic habitats, fisheries, hydrology, and water uses. Initially, some of these changes were accepted as inevitable trade-offs for the benefits provided, but over time the expectations of the people in the basin changed as the economy improved. The changing expectations caused TVA to evolve and respond, with its scientists and engineers working to understand the changing hydrology and conditions and looking for ways to facilitate multipurpose operations of the system of dams and reservoirs. A recent example of this is TVA's Clean Water Initiative, a way of focusing attention of smaller watershed units (see Box 2.1, Chapter 2).

Bonneville Power Administration

The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) provides electric power, transmission, and energy services for the people of the Pacific Northwest. BPA is also responsible for conservation of fish and wildlife, energy, and renewable resources, and for enhancing the region's economic and environmental health. In 1995, BPA spent $399 million on fish and wildlife investments. Congress created the BPA in 1937 to market and transmit the power produced at Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River, but today, BPA markets the power from 29 federal dams and one nonfederal nuclear plant in the Pacific Northwest. The dams and electrical system constitute the Federal Columbia River Power System, which services an area of 300,000 sq. mi. (including most of the Columbia River Watershed) and a population of 10.1 million people (BPA, 1997).

The BPA power system has produced significant benefits for the region, but these have come at a substantial cost to the fish and wildlife resources of the Columbia River basin. Salmon and steelhead populations have been reduced to historic lows, and many fish species in this region are or are about to be listed under the federal Endangered Species Act. Other resident fish and wildlife populations have also been affected. Native Americans and fishery-dependent communities, businesses, and recreationists have suffered substantial losses. In 1996, the governors of Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington assembled a broadly representative, 20-member team to undertake a "Comprehensive Review of the Northwest Energy System." The goal was to reach consensus on how to shape change, ensuring that environmental goals are met and the benefits of the hydroelectric system are preserved for the Northwest. One of the recommendations was to hold the Northwest Power Planning Council, or its successor, responsible for Columbia River system governance (Steering Committee of the Comprehensive Review of the Northwest Energy System, 1996). However, the listing of salmon under the Endangered Species Act has resulted in reregulation of river flow that has involved a multitude of federal and state agencies.

Federal Emergency Management Agency

A cabinet level independent agency, the Federal Emergency Management



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement