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The following is presented as part of The Columbian’s Opinion content, which offers a point of view in order to provoke thought and debate of civic issues. Opinions represent the viewpoint of the author. Unsigned editorials represent the consensus opinion of The Columbian’s editorial board, which operates independently of the news department.
News / Opinion / Letters to the Editor

Letter: Modernize energy services

By Taigen Soethe, Lynnwood
Published: June 25, 2024, 6:00am

Energy that comes at the cost of salmon extinction, such as that generated by the Bonneville Power Administration in the Columbia Basin, is not clean. BPA’s negative revenue projection adds to the costs of the status quo of maintaining an overreliance on hydropower.

BPA should modernize their energy services and support the full range of grid-connected clean energy sources by focusing on wind and solar generation, as well as energy storage. This would ensure reliable energy for customers during winter and summer demand peaks. Hydropower is increasingly negatively affected by reduced snowpacks, varied precipitation and hotter summers, making it even less effective for consumers than in past years.

Hydropower generation on the Columbia River is highest in spring and fall, the opposite seasons of energy demands. Additionally, some of this water is diverted from electricity generation to spillover to aid juvenile salmon migration. These factors, combined with the current drought impacts in Washington, show that we need diverse clean energy in a single, unified Western energy market to relieve pressure on the federal hydrosystem.

We encourage readers to express their views about public issues. Letters to the editor are subject to editing for brevity and clarity. Limit letters to 200 words (100 words if endorsing or opposing a political candidate or ballot measure) and allow 30 days between submissions. Send Us a Letter