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Old 10-09-2019, 06:51 AM   #1
baguba
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Default Dammed to Extinction

I attended a presentation last night that showed the film "Dammed to Extinction" producing 50% mad and 50% sad from me = 100% frustration.
In essence, the documentary discussed the demise of the orcas due to the depletion in salmon populations. Adding to the depletion of salmon problem is the decrease in size of the salmon - in the "good years" when salmon where considerably larger an orca could feed on 5-6/day and be healthy. Currently, the smaller sized salmon results with the orca needed to expend significantly more energy to feed itself = almost negating nutrients gained from nutrients/energy lost.
One of the films strong ask/proposal to correct things is the removal of the 4 Snake River dams (ie their power generation isnt needed or used, only benefit is barge transportation for wheat yet rail transport would be cheaper, etc,

Whereas i am a proponent to save the orcas and of course increase our salmon populations - i would still prefer to hear "the rest of the story".

The question - is there any benefit to those 4 dams any more??

Here is a link to the movie trailer

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Old 10-09-2019, 07:41 AM   #2
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Default Re: Dammed to Extinction

there is always a benefit from those that benefit from it. those that dont suffer somewhat.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:12 AM   #3
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Hydroelectric facilities aren't just there for the cheap electric benefit. It was a great perk but since the windmills have taken over the power from them has to be used before the dam power. (Sad v glad depending on your "climate change" stance).

Flood control was the original reason for instituting the dam system as I know it. Anybody know different? Maybe that was just the CR dams.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:32 AM   #4
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The way that small farmers have been treated in the past several decades, the only ones benefitting from these dams are big ag. And they don't care about fish runs.

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Old 10-09-2019, 08:33 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishin"G"man View Post
Hydroelectric facilities aren't just there for the cheap electric benefit. It was a great perk but since the windmills have taken over the power from them has to be used before the dam power. (Sad v glad depending on your "climate change" stance).

Flood control was the original reason for instituting the dam system as I know it. Anybody know different? Maybe that was just the CR dams.

Mainstem Columbia River dams have no flood control, they are run of the river dams, the level stays the same all year.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:39 AM   #6
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Default Re: Dammed to Extinction

Of course there's still some benefit to the folks relying on barge transportation, a little bit of power generation, others that enjoy the flat-water recreation opportunities, irrigation feeds, etc. The question is at what cost compared to the alternatives?

Barge traffic would need to be shifted to rail mostly, plus maybe some increased trucking, which has a cost. Irrigation draws would need to be extended down to a lower base elevation, slack water anglers & wakeboarders, etc would need to relocate to other areas, and so on. The lost power generation is not nothing, but those dams combined only provide a small fraction of the bigger ones like John Day, McNary, Hells Canyon, Grand Coulee, etc, and an increasing amount is being offset by other means also. And obviously the current ongoing maintenance/operation costs of the dams (including dredging to support the barges, not just the dams alone) is costing us a ton every year already, so all those "extra" costs above aren't really as much net as they might seem if they're being added up from scratch, instead of being compared to the hefty baseline expense like they should.

Overall, the added benefits to fish runs from a free(er)-flowing Snake and everything else that depends on them ~ from Orcas to guides, tackle manufacturers & bait shops, motels in Astoria, etc ~ have been projected to far outweigh those costs both environmentally and economically. But the transition won't be painless for everyone, so of course those that are currently profiting from the status quo (and their elected/appointed/paid representatives) have predictably been fighting it ~ so far, successfully...
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:48 AM   #7
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Default Re: Dammed to Extinction

Quote:
Originally Posted by baguba View Post

The question - is there any benefit to those 4 dams any more??
It looks like the best argument is they handle peak power demands: https://www.bpa.gov/news/pubs/FactSh...ver%20dams.pdf

Their average output is 30%, but the fact sheet makes it sound like their value is in handling peak demand. There's a cost comparison, but I didn't see a nuclear replacement option. Something like the a couple NuScale plants might be a reasonable alternative.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:37 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by freespool View Post
Mainstem Columbia River dams have no flood control, they are run of the river dams, the level stays the same all year.
This statement is actually not true. There is flood control because the entire system of dams gives the ability to control flows. This extends all the way from Bonny to the headwaters dams in Canada.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:05 PM   #9
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This statement is actually not true. There is flood control because the entire system of dams gives the ability to control flows. This extends all the way from Bonny to the headwaters dams in Canada.
Run of the river dams operate with impoundments at full pool, where is all the flood water going to go?


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Run-of...droelectricity
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by pinhead2 View Post
This statement is actually not true. There is flood control because the entire system of dams gives the ability to control flows. This extends all the way from Bonny to the headwaters dams in Canada.

Snake River dams provide zero flood control. They are "run of the river" = what comes in goes out.


The only mainstem Columbia dam that provides flood control is John Day Dam. The rest are run of the river.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:30 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Riverteeth View Post
Snake River dams provide zero flood control. They are "run of the river" = what comes in goes out.


The only mainstem Columbia dam that provides flood control is John Day Dam. The rest are run of the river.
John Day is also run of the river. I think Grand Coulee is the lowest mainstem Columbia River dam that can provide flood control.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:33 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Riverteeth View Post
Snake River dams provide zero flood control. They are "run of the river" = what comes in goes out.


The only mainstem Columbia dam that provides flood control is John Day Dam. The rest are run of the river.
I actually know what I'm talking about here. Predictive modeling of inflows allows individual dams to control pool level within a narrow range and operators can control peak flows by manipulating the entire system, from Canada on down. The last time that the flows were too high to prevent flooding was in the mid 1990's, and even then the peak levels were modulated to minimize high water damage.
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Old 10-09-2019, 02:44 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freespool View Post
Run of the river dams operate with impoundments at full pool, where is all the flood water going to go?


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Run-of...droelectricity
That's actually a bit of a misnomer really. FCRPS dams all peak to some extent as evident by pond fluctuations (toilet bowl rings) of several feet throughout the day. True run of the river projects don't bounce the ponds daily to re-regulate flow after short peaking events or throughout the whole system (which can have a large impact on residence time). Sure the overall discharge goes down the river but the timing of water release is altered to match power demand. Semantics I know but the devil is in the details. And yes the John Day Dam and pond has some storage capability, it's the only one downstream of Chief Joseph that does. You are right in that storage reservoirs are a whole different ball game relative to the lower 9 projects.

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Old 10-09-2019, 03:07 PM   #14
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One of the reasons that I rarely come here anymore. I am a fisherman. Have been for years. But we absolutely have no right to destroy species. We are not just killing the Orcas, but we are killing the salmon too. The Dams are a part of it and simply have to be addressed. There are many reasons, and over fishing is among them. I have brought this up before, only to be seriously castigated by many of the selfish members here. Discussing this in this board will not get you far. Many of the people here are simply in denial and are a major part of the problem.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freespool View Post
Mainstem Columbia River dams have no flood control, they are run of the river dams, the level stays the same all year.

Ummm.... (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) That's not true, they do fluctuate for purposes of hyroelectric and flood control as stated.

Run-of-river hydroelectricity (ROR) or run-of-the-river hydroelectricity is a type of hydroelectric generation plant whereby little or no water storage is provided. Run-of-the-river power plants may have no water storage at all or a limited amount of storage, in which case the storage reservoir is referred to as pondage. A plant without pondage is subject to seasonal river flows, thus the plant will operate as an intermittent energy source. Conventional hydro uses reservoirs, which regulate water for flood control and dispatchable electrical power.
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:10 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by fishin"G"man View Post
Ummm.... (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) That's not true, they do fluctuate for purposes of hyroelectric and flood control as stated.

Run-of-river hydroelectricity (ROR) or run-of-the-river hydroelectricity is a type of hydroelectric generation plant whereby little or no water storage is provided. Run-of-the-river power plants may have no water storage at all or a limited amount of storage, in which case the storage reservoir is referred to as pondage. A plant without pondage is subject to seasonal river flows, thus the plant will operate as an intermittent energy source. Conventional hydro uses reservoirs, which regulate water for flood control and dispatchable electrical power.



Mainstem CR hydro electric dams are not flood control dams.
Detroit Lake is a flood control dam, Bonneville Dam is not, saying they are does not make it so .
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:50 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by jds10 View Post
One of the reasons that I rarely come here anymore. I am a fisherman. Have been for years. But we absolutely have no right to destroy species. We are not just killing the Orcas, but we are killing the salmon too. The Dams are a part of it and simply have to be addressed. There are many reasons, and over fishing is among them. I have brought this up before, only to be seriously castigated by many of the selfish members here. Discussing this in this board will not get you far. Many of the people here are simply in denial and are a major part of the problem.
It’s actually changing quite a bit, I was surprised when I checked back in recently. I have felt similar to you at times. The older members won’t change their minds and that’s ok, everyone is entitled to their opinion. There are a lot of younger folks who are open to different ways of thinking, and as time passes more of them will join.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:09 PM   #18
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It’s actually changing quite a bit, I was surprised when I checked back in recently. I have felt similar to you at times. The older members won’t change their minds and that’s ok, everyone is entitled to their opinion. There are a lot of younger folks who are open to different ways of thinking, and as time passes more of them will join.
True and true.

And one of the reasons I have largely given up on fishing for salmon and steelhead. Once I turned my attention to trout fly fishing I found I get to enjoy the few moments I can be outdoors, catch some beautiful creatures and feel fishy electricity all through the rod (rather than cranking in a pro troll and a pound of lead) and I am often by myself.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:10 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by freespool View Post
Mainstem CR hydro electric dams are not flood control dams.
Detroit Lake is a flood control dam, Bonneville Dam is not, saying they are does not make it so .
They are not flood control dams but they are manipulated to control water levels. What some here fail to understand is that 'run of river's does not mean ' when X volume of water passes dam#1 at Y time then that amount will pass dam#4 downstream all at once. Operators have algorithms that determine how much spill is necessary at downstream dams to avoid peaking water at high levels. They slow the peak timing and lower the height of the peak by drawing it out over a longer period. That controls flooding. Because the dams have limited elevation variance, problems will arise when a peak flood event is of extended duration, but for the most part flooding is well controlled for most high water events and mitigated with levels lower than they would be without the dams in extended events.The whole system works this way because the manipulation can occur on a series of dams regulating flow of a single system.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:55 PM   #20
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I watch the spring flows very carefully at Bonneville as it relates to springer fishing.
I also have driven by the Bonneville pool all my adult life.
What I see is no matter how high the flows are, the pool stays the same.
This would lead one to think the dam operators are just passing the high flows down river, and not holding water back.
Now there may be some small tweaks and manipulation of flows, but when spring high flows occur, they pass the large majority of the high water down river.
A flood control dam is empty when the spring run off happens, like Detroit Lake.
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Old 10-09-2019, 06:05 PM   #21
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You all do enjoy the food that is grown on the 2 million acres of land irrigated with surface waters of the Snake River don't ya?
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Old 10-09-2019, 06:48 PM   #22
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Not good news for dam huggers.


https://econw.com/projects-collectio...ffs-of-removal


The results of the analysis suggest that society will incur some costs from dam removal due to lost barge transportation and effects on grid services, but the public benefits relative to costs strongly justify removing the Lower Snake River Dams. In other words, the benefits of dam removal are large enough to fully compensate individuals or industries that could experience costs if the dams are removed.
An important component of this analysis is the incorporation of non-use values (i.e., the extent to which the public values a restored natural river system and reduced extinction risk of wild salmon). This analysis highlights the importance of including non-use values in future evaluations of the Lower Snake River dams.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:17 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spinitrode View Post
Of course there's still some benefit to the folks relying on barge transportation, a little bit of power generation, others that enjoy the flat-water recreation opportunities, irrigation feeds, etc. The question is at what cost compared to the alternatives?

Barge traffic would need to be shifted to rail mostly, plus maybe some increased trucking, which has a cost. Irrigation draws would need to be extended down to a lower base elevation, slack water anglers & wakeboarders, etc would need to relocate to other areas, and so on. The lost power generation is not nothing, but those dams combined only provide a small fraction of the bigger ones like John Day, McNary, Hells Canyon, Grand Coulee, etc, and an increasing amount is being offset by other means also. And obviously the current ongoing maintenance/operation costs of the dams (including dredging to support the barges, not just the dams alone) is costing us a ton every year already, so all those "extra" costs above aren't really as much net as they might seem if they're being added up from scratch, instead of being compared to the hefty baseline expense like they should.

Overall, the added benefits to fish runs from a free(er)-flowing Snake and everything else that depends on them ~ from Orcas to guides, tackle manufacturers & bait shops, motels in Astoria, etc ~ have been projected to far outweigh those costs both environmentally and economically. But the transition won't be painless for everyone, so of course those that are currently profiting from the status quo (and their elected/appointed/paid representatives) have predictably been fighting it ~ so far, successfully...
Best answer so far in my mind pretty much sums it up. Barge transportation is great though from a low carbon emission/efficiency perspective versus rail/trucks. Believe net benefit of dam removal would far outweigh that though as stated?
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:06 PM   #24
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This OPB story paints a different angle to the Orca/Salmon story. https://www.opb.org/news/article/chi...on-washington/
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Old 10-10-2019, 04:57 AM   #25
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[QUOTE=fishin"G"man;16137061]Hydroelectric facilities aren't just there for the cheap electric benefit. It was a great perk but since the windmills have taken over the power from them has to be used before the dam power. (Sad v glad depending on your "climate change" stance).


What???? NUTZ..... As quoted by Northwest Power and Conservation council,

As of 2017, wind power accounts for just over 9,000 megawatts of all generating capacity in the Northwest, or about 14.3 percent of the total, and 2,880 average megawatts of the region’s average annual energy, or about 10 percent of the total.

http://https://www.nwcouncil.org/rep...tory/Windpower

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Old 10-10-2019, 05:55 AM   #26
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[quote=pukpmk;16137931]
Quote:
Originally Posted by fishin"G"man View Post
Hydroelectric facilities aren't just there for the cheap electric benefit. It was a great perk but since the windmills have taken over the power from them has to be used before the dam power. (Sad v glad depending on your "climate change" stance).


What???? NUTZ..... As quoted by Northwest Power and Conservation council,

As of 2017, wind power accounts for just over 9,000 megawatts of all generating capacity in the Northwest, or about 14.3 percent of the total, and 2,880 average megawatts of the region’s average annual energy, or about 10 percent of the total.

http://https://www.nwcouncil.org/rep...tory/Windpower

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Just about enough to support all the new housing in Ridgefield,Wn., don't know about the other areas! PEOPLE it's TOO many PEOPLE!! And of course the 4 snake dams causing the Chinook to magically go from 30/40# in 2004 to 10/18# today! Dave
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Old 10-10-2019, 06:05 AM   #27
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Flood control? What would flood without the dams? The rocky banks might get a little mud deposited now and then? The sediments might get scoured out and the gravel beds re-freshed ? Would Lewiston, Asotin or Hoodsport be washed away? Is all this to protect the metropolis of Heller’s Bar?

We would have a major portion of one of our best rivers alive and fluctuating again. This would generate a whole new level of interest and involvement in the river to the benefit of many people, businesses, fish and orcas.

Time to re-examine “progress” as defined by the Army Corps of Engineers from the 1930s. That laser show at Grand Coulee is outdated.

No one has a God given right to living a consequence free life in a flood (or Hurricane) zone.

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Old 10-10-2019, 06:58 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by CPperch View Post
You all do enjoy the food that is grown on the 2 million acres of land irrigated with surface waters of the Snake River don't ya?

The water would still be there and available. The distribution system would obviously have to be re engineered.
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Old 10-10-2019, 07:22 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by freespool View Post
I watch the spring flows very carefully at Bonneville as it relates to springer fishing.
I also have driven by the Bonneville pool all my adult life.
What I see is no matter how high the flows are, the pool stays the same.
This would lead one to think the dam operators are just passing the high flows down river, and not holding water back.
Now there may be some small tweaks and manipulation of flows, but when spring high flows occur, they pass the large majority of the high water down river.
A flood control dam is empty when the spring run off happens, like Detroit Lake.
I've already spent more time than I wish trying to explain how the system is used for flood control. Forebay levels can be adjusted up to several feet but it is rarely done because it isn't necessary. Even raising levels a single foot in each of the 4 snake dams and the 4 lower Columbia dams temporarily stores an enormous amount of water (8 dams X surface area of all dams combined X 1 foot). As I've been trying to make clear, the timing and amount of the spill at each dam is actively manipulated so that the peak flows below Bonneville arrive over an extended period, which has the affect of lowering the maximum river level at the Bonneville tailrace. A close analogy would be an irrigation ditch with check valves that are opened and closed with the objective of keeping the ditch bank full and not overflowing. Where those valves are set depends upon the predicted inflow from side ditches and they are adjusted sequentially to prevent overflow below the final valve.
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Old 10-10-2019, 07:27 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by ccw View Post
Flood control? What would flood without the dams? The rocky banks might get a little mud deposited now and then? The sediments might get scoured out and the gravel beds re-freshed ? Would Lewiston, Asotin or Hoodsport be washed away? Is all this to protect the metropolis of Heller’s Bar?

We would have a major portion of one of our best rivers alive and fluctuating again. This would generate a whole new level of interest and involvement in the river to the benefit of many people, businesses, fish and orcas.

Time to re-examine “progress” as defined by the Army Corps of Engineers from the 1930s. That laser show at Grand Coulee is outdated.

No one has a God given right to living a consequence free life in a flood zone (or Hurricane Zone).

CW
A drive up the Salmon River gives a glimpse to what I imagine the Snake could be again. I'm always amazed at how good the spawning gravel looks around Boise, and nothing can get to it.

Without the lower 4, does Dworshak come out then too? "Water releases from Dworshak Dam are also controlled to optimize power generation at four downstream dams on the Snake River"

https://www.drakemag.com/back-issues...-dworshak.html
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Old 10-10-2019, 07:35 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by pinhead2 View Post
I've already spent more time than I wish trying to explain how the system is used for flood control. Forebay levels can be adjusted up to several feet but it is rarely done because it isn't necessary. Even raising levels a single foot in each of the 4 snake dams and the 4 lower Columbia dams temporarily stores an enormous amount of water (8 dams X surface area of all dams combined X 1 foot). As I've been trying to make clear, the timing and amount of the spill at each dam is actively manipulated so that the peak flows below Bonneville arrive over an extended period, which has the affect of lowering the maximum river level at the Bonneville tailrace. A close analogy would be an irrigation ditch with check valves that are opened and closed with the objective of keeping the ditch bank full and not overflowing. Where those valves are set depends upon the predicted inflow from side ditches and they are adjusted sequentially to prevent overflow below the final valve.



Here's a summery of the four lower Snake River run of the river dams.


http://www.bluefish.org/fourdams.htm


"These dams were not built to control floods."
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"A curious thing happens when fish stocks decline: People who aren't aware of the old levels accept the new ones as normal. Over generations, societies adjust their expectations downward to match prevailing conditions." Kennedy Warne

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Old 10-10-2019, 08:16 AM   #32
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Snake River dam proponents are simply stalling and waiting for the day when the orcas and salmon are all gone, so there will be no more difficulties for those proponents in treating the Snake River waters as though they own them and the benefits to be derived from their use. Meanwhile, the opponents of those dams are absolutely powerless and the 98% of the population that exists between these two groups don't even know the dams exist.

Meanwhile, if it could be calculated, it would be interesting to know how much of the decrease in the chinook salmon runs is due to the fact that the recent tendency to see individual chinook size decrease is resulting in fewer eggs being produced by those fish; and thus, fewer chinook being produced.

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Old 10-10-2019, 08:52 AM   #33
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It’s actually changing quite a bit, I was surprised when I checked back in recently. I have felt similar to you at times. The older members won’t change their minds and that’s ok, everyone is entitled to their opinion. There are a lot of younger folks who are open to different ways of thinking, and as time passes more of them will join.
I hope you are right. But, it is not OK that older members won’t change their minds. We are simply beyond a place where we can afford to just look the other way at that attitude.
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Old 10-10-2019, 09:00 AM   #34
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Hydroelectric energy has run it's course, it is having a very hard time competing with renewables, the difference is renewables are getting cheaper, hydro is stuck with little to no ability to adapt to the new energy market.
Simply put at some point in the near future hydroelectric will not pencil out, and then it will be gone like the horse and carriage.
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Old 10-10-2019, 11:12 AM   #35
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Hydroelectric energy has run it's course, it is having a very hard time competing with renewables, the difference is renewables are getting cheaper, hydro is stuck with little to no ability to adapt to the new energy market.
Simply put at some point in the near future hydroelectric will not pencil out, and then it will be gone like the horse and carriage.
That's an interesting take. As I understand it the integration of renewables onto the grid has made hydro (and any base load facility that can peak)more important to grid reliability than ever. I don't think large scale hydro is going anywhere anytime soon. Tributary projects are a whole different ballgame though. Food for thought anyhow.

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Old 10-10-2019, 12:05 PM   #36
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Well according to the OPB story I posted above the Orca population overall is doing quite well in the north Pacific and the lack of large salmon in the Puget Sound is due in part to the selective gluttony of Alaska Orcas who target the largest salmon resulting in fewer and smaller Salmon for the Puget Sound Orca. If the North Pacific Orca were more responsible in their eating habits and all those in favor of eliminating hydroelectric would lower their use of electricity by eliminating the use of electical devices like computers, cellular technology, electric guzzling hybrid vehicles, electric heat and AC then and only then would the Puget Sound Orca have a fighting chance.
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Old 10-10-2019, 12:49 PM   #37
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That's an interesting take. As I understand it the integration of renewables onto the grid has made hydro (and any base load facility that can peak)more important to grid reliability than ever. I don't think large scale hydro is going anywhere anytime soon. Tributary projects are a whole different ballgame though. Food for thought anyhow.


Many see BPA shifting from power producer to power grid manipulator.
Using existing hydro dams to smooth out the spikes in renewable production.
If this happens the four lower Snake River dams will be breached.


https://www.idahostatesman.com/news/...192037249.html


He needs to move BPA through this transition, where its primary role shifts from power production to grid services. The dams become a tool to instantly offset the intermittent nature of wind and solar. And BPA spends more time using customers’ water heaters to absorb power when the wind blows, or improving its forecasting to better manage the power supply and keep its grids reliable.
BPA has to do this in a way that it can sell at a competitive price to public utilities, like in Idaho Falls, and to rural electrical cooperatives.
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:00 PM   #38
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Hydroelectric facilities aren't just there for the cheap electric benefit. It was a great perk but since the windmills have taken over the power from them has to be used before the dam power. (Sad v glad depending on your "climate change" stance).

Flood control was the original reason for instituting the dam system as I know it. Anybody know different? Maybe that was just the CR dams.
Snake dams provide very little flood control
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:02 PM   #39
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well according to the opb story i posted above the orca population overall is doing quite well in the north pacific and the lack of large salmon in the puget sound is due in part to the selective gluttony of alaska orcas who target the largest salmon resulting in fewer and smaller salmon for the puget sound orca. If the north pacific orca were more responsible in their eating habits and all those in favor of eliminating hydroelectric would lower their use of electricity by eliminating the use of electical devices like computers, cellular technology, electric guzzling hybrid vehicles, electric heat and ac then and only then would the puget sound orca have a fighting chance.

huh?
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:05 PM   #40
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The water would still be there and available. The distribution system would obviously have to be re engineered.
Not exactly. The system is not truly flow through and when summer flows are lowest, irrigation extraction is highest leading to low river levels, high temps, low oxygen.

It is a sad fact that the world today is not and will never be as it was 200 years ago. It’s an interesting discussion, but often lacks the flavor of modern realities of population, air conditioning, money, lattes, laptops.......

I guess we could eat orcas that MIGHT grow fat on the increased salmon populations
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:17 PM   #41
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At the same time energy consumption peaked 2009-2010 and in the last decade we have a 30% decrease in usage. So consumption today isn’t as high as it was 20 years ago.


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Old 10-10-2019, 01:32 PM   #42
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Many see BPA shifting from power producer to power grid manipulator.
Using existing hydro dams to smooth out the spikes in renewable production.
If this happens the four lower Snake River dams will be breached.


https://www.idahostatesman.com/news/...192037249.html


He needs to move BPA through this transition, where its primary role shifts from power production to grid services. The dams become a tool to instantly offset the intermittent nature of wind and solar. And BPA spends more time using customers’ water heaters to absorb power when the wind blows, or improving its forecasting to better manage the power supply and keep its grids reliable.
BPA has to do this in a way that it can sell at a competitive price to public utilities, like in Idaho Falls, and to rural electrical cooperatives.
Exactly but how are the lower Snake Dams not an asset to smooth out those renewable generation spikes? Just trying to think through the logic. They are operated more or less like a miniature version of the mainstem C dams correct (by that I mean peaking daily and bouncing pond elevations to reregulate flow)? Lots of wind power out in the Tucannon/Walla Wallla area.
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:46 PM   #43
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Exactly but how are the lower Snake Dams not an asset to smooth out those renewable generation spikes? Just trying to think through the logic. They are operated more or less like a miniature version of the mainstem C dams correct (by that I mean peaking daily and bouncing pond elevations to reregulate flow)? Lots of wind power out in the Tucannon/Walla Wallla area.

That's simple, they were originally designed as a series of locks.
They simply added the energy generation, the primary design is a lock.
So going forward you think the Corps is going to maintain a very expensive lock system, to save these small power grid contributing dams?
I don't think so, they will cut what doesn't produce.
Currently those "locks" have billions in deferred maintenance costs.
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Old 10-10-2019, 01:57 PM   #44
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That's simple, they were originally designed as a series of locks.
They simply added the energy generation, the primary design is a lock.
So going forward you think the Corps is going to maintain a very expensive lock system, to save these small power grid contributing dams?
I don't think so, they will cut what doesn't produce.
Currently those "locks" have billions in deferred maintenance costs.
Understood but it's not name plate capacity we're talking about here. It's the ability of the dams to introduce power to the grid when called on to smooth out renewables. I would think that's the real value of those projects going forward. Otherwise as renewables increase you have to build another base load generation station to do the same job. Which seems to increase their value, not diminish it.
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Old 10-10-2019, 02:21 PM   #45
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That's simple, they were originally designed as a series of locks.
They simply added the energy generation, the primary design is a lock.
So going forward you think the Corps is going to maintain a very expensive lock system, to save these small power grid contributing dams?
I don't think so, they will cut what doesn't produce.
Currently those "locks" have billions in deferred maintenance costs.


Yea small.... each dam only has the capability of powering a city the size of Seattle.


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Old 10-10-2019, 03:03 PM   #46
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Yea small.... each dam only has the capability of powering a city the size of Seattle.

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For about three weeks of the year, then the average combined output of those four dams is around 900MW, about the power needed to light Seattle.
Another huge factor is the all time low for lower Snake River commercial barge traffic.


https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle...n-dams-debate/


For upriver farmers, rail has become a more competitive choice, especially with diesel for trucking grain to a river barge costing about $4 a gallon.
“Economics is driving this,” said Ken Casavant, professor at Washington State University and an expert on the economics and logistics of the waterway. “It’s a competitive shift.”
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Old 10-10-2019, 08:15 PM   #47
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Here's a summery of the four lower Snake River run of the river dams.


http://www.bluefish.org/fourdams.htm


"These dams were not built to control floods."
Nevertheless, they are used to control Columbia River levels downstream. Look at the chart. Notice the minimum pool levels and the maximum pool levels (that's in the link you provided). By manipulating those levels, operators have a modicum of control of the timing of peak flows into the Columbia and ultimately the tailrace height below Bonneville.The entire Columbia system is operated this way during peak high water periods.I have first-hand knowledge of system operation, but you continue to argue the reality.
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Old 10-10-2019, 08:15 PM   #48
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Old 10-11-2019, 01:13 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hydrophilic View Post
It’️s actually changing quite a bit, I was surprised when I checked back in recently. I have felt similar to you at times. The older members won’️t change their minds and that’️s ok, everyone is entitled to their opinion. There are a lot of younger folks who are open to different ways of thinking, and as time passes more of them will join.
I hope you are right. But, it is not OK that older members won’️t change their minds. We are simply beyond a place where we can afford to just look the other way at that attitude.

Ahhh, the unbridled hubris of youth. I too can remember my 19th birthday and being the sole proprietor of ALL the answers. Alas, it was a burden to heavy to carry so eventually I passed it on to someone younger, less weighed down by experience who assured me they had the greater wisdom required to carry the torch forward.
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Old 10-11-2019, 02:11 PM   #50
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Well according to the OPB story I posted above the Orca population overall is doing quite well in the north Pacific and the lack of large salmon in the Puget Sound is due in part to the selective gluttony of Alaska Orcas who target the largest salmon resulting in fewer and smaller Salmon for the Puget Sound Orca. If the North Pacific Orca were more responsible in their eating habits and all those in favor of eliminating hydroelectric would lower their use of electricity by eliminating the use of electical devices like computers, cellular technology, electric guzzling hybrid vehicles, electric heat and AC then and only then would the Puget Sound Orca have a fighting chance.

That's right, blame the Alaska Orcas. Of course, it has nothing to do with the Alaska Commercial Salmon Fishers or any other Commercial Fishers from there south. Furthermore, why after many decades of sufficient salmon for Puget Sound Orcas to eat are there all of a sudden not enough? Did the Alaska Orcas get more efficient; or did they make a decision to eradicate their southern cousins?
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Old 10-11-2019, 02:40 PM   #51
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Nevertheless, they are used to control Columbia River levels downstream. Look at the chart. Notice the minimum pool levels and the maximum pool levels (that's in the link you provided). By manipulating those levels, operators have a modicum of control of the timing of peak flows into the Columbia and ultimately the tailrace height below Bonneville.The entire Columbia system is operated this way during peak high water periods.I have first-hand knowledge of system operation, but you continue to argue the reality.

Pinhead2,


I'm not disputing your knowledge or experience with regard to the FCRPS operations. However I think you may be misleading the larger audience here regarding the flood control capacity and ability of these dams which are "run-of-river" by their very nature. It's true that each project has some limited pool elevation control and can link their operations to provide flood control limited to hours and not any sustained flooding. But to put this in perspective, absent the very real storage capacity of Palisades, Dworshack, and Grand Coulee, if these storage reservoirs held back zero (I know, they are not designed to do this) spring runoff, how long would this manipulation of the lower 8 dams (4 Snake, 4 LCR) provide meaningful flood protection to Vancouver and Portland?


So while it is incorrect to say the 4 lower Snake dams provide no flood control, it is also incorrect to say that they provide significant flood control, relative to the Columbia River system overall.
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Old 10-11-2019, 03:06 PM   #52
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That's right, blame the Alaska Orcas. Of course, it has nothing to do with the Alaska Commercial Salmon Fishers or any other Commercial Fishers from there south. Furthermore, why after many decades of sufficient salmon for Puget Sound Orcas to eat are there all of a sudden not enough? Did the Alaska Orcas get more efficient; or did they make a decision to eradicate their southern cousins?
Well Charles Darwin told us that species adapt or go extinct. Perhaps what we are seeing is a biological example of tolerance stacking rather than the result of a single cause. Whatever the cause I sure do miss tbe days of 40 lb Salmon when Vic Atiyeh and John Spellman were running things.

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Old 10-12-2019, 09:03 AM   #53
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How many times have we heard "those four dams are not coming out anytime soon"?
Well soon we may never hear it again.
Renewable energy is going to do what many here said would never happen, and that's to stick a fork in the four lower Snake River dams.
Please note in this entire article they never mention the four dams are critical to operate the grid.


https://lmtribune.com/northwest/bpa-...fbe822739.html




Some activists have suggested the agency walk away from the four lower Snake River dams that need costly turbine upgrades in the coming decades and are responsible for a significant portion of the agency's fish and wildlife costs. Breaching the dams is the cornerstone strategy of many Snake River salmon advocacy groups.
succeed.
"Good luck and at what price?" said Linwood Laughy of Kooskia, who worked with economist Jones, journalist Steve Hawley and producer Jim Norton to write a white paper on the issue.

The men say the agency should consider divesting the four dams, which could pave the way for their removal. According to their reasoning, breaching would save money by eliminating the needed upgrades and reduce mitigation costs associated with the dams.

Buried in the agency's five-year strategic plan is this line: "And through the Columbia River System Operations Review, BPA and its federal action agency partners will produce a recommendation on the future of the lower Snake River dams after completing a comprehensive analysis."

The single sentence is devoid of details, but for some it is loaded with foreshadowing regarding the agency's commitment to the dams and the costly upgrades they will need in the next few decades.




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Old 10-13-2019, 08:33 AM   #54
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Well Charles Darwin told us that species adapt or go extinct. Perhaps what we are seeing is a biological example of tolerance stacking rather than the result of a single cause. Whatever the cause I sure do miss tbe days of 40 lb Salmon when Vic Atiyeh and John Spellman were running things.
It is pretty hard for salmon species to adapt to conditions caused by human activity. Do you think the decline in Columbia salmonids from 20 million to about 1 million counting hatchery fish has anything to do with those human activities?
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:39 AM   #55
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It is pretty hard for salmon species to adapt to conditions caused by human activity. Do you think the decline in Columbia salmonids from 20 million to about 1 million counting hatchery fish has anything to do with those human activities?
Can you provide a peer reviewed study for that 20 million number?
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:41 AM   #56
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Can you provide a peer reviewed study for that 20 million number?
12 to 16 million annually.
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:49 AM   #57
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12 to 16 million annually.
So was it 12, 16, or 20 million. Where did those numbers come from?
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Old 10-13-2019, 08:52 AM   #58
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Ahhh, the unbridled hubris of youth. I too can remember my 19th birthday and being the sole proprietor of ALL the answers. Alas, it was a burden to heavy to carry so eventually I passed it on to someone younger, less weighed down by experience who assured me they had the greater wisdom required to carry the torch forward.
Ah, yes. The wisdom of old age. Except, that along with your major premise, you could not be more wrong. My 19 birthday was about 50 years ago. Different from some, I have spent that time really examining our future and the future that we, we full of wisdom old people, are leaving for future generations. It isn’t very good. But we still have time to do the right thing. I have spent about 64 of my years in Oregon. Hunting and fishing. I don’t ridicule either. But in light of what we know, have learned and have seen, the evidence is just overwhelming to anyone open to it. We are really screwing a lot of stuff up. Now, you can hide your head in the sand and demand to get your “share”, ensuring our total failure. Or....... you can participate in doing the right thing and try to help assure that future generations have good options left.

It really is that simple.

You have made me think about the solution though. Maybe the selfish old guys aren’t going to be the answer. Maybe we need to address this issue with the 19 year olds out there, since it is their future that you are stealing. Like the environmental issues, maybe they can get together and change things in spite of us smart old guys.

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Old 10-13-2019, 06:18 PM   #59
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So was it 12, 16, or 20 million. Where did those numbers come from?





https://www.critfc.org/fish-and-wate...-river-salmon/
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Old 10-13-2019, 06:20 PM   #60
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[QUOTE=Nightvisionary;16140699]So was it 12, 16, or 20 million. Where did those numbers come from?[/QUOTE


https://www.critfc.org/fish-and-wate...-river-salmon/


Salmon once occupied nearly 13,000 miles of Columbia River Basin streams and rivers. According to conservative estimates, the Columbia River Basin, both above and below Bonneville Dam, once produced between 10 and 16 million salmon annually. Historically, salmon runs in the Columbia River Basin consisted of 16% fall chinook, 12% spring chinook, 30% summer chinook, 11% coho, 23% sockeye, 8% steelhead, and less than 1% chum. These runs generally extended from March through October, though steelhead runs extended through the winter.
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