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Project Summary

Project 2007-384-00 - Reducing the Cost of Reservoir Removal
Project Number:
Reducing the Cost of Reservoir Removal
A competition is proposed to engineering students where entrants will consider the costs associated with removal of Lower Snake River dams. The breaching of these four dams may be deemed necessary for the recovery of Idaho's anadromous fish.
Proponent Orgs:
Bluefish (Non-Profit)
Starting FY:
Ending FY:
Province Subbasin %
Basinwide - 100.00%
Focal Species:
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 0.0%   Resident: 0.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
BiOp Association:

No photos have been uploaded yet for this Project.

The table content is updated frequently and thus contains more recent information than what was in the original proposal reviewed by ISRP and Council.

Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2007-384-00-NPCC-20090924
Project: 2007-384-00 - Reducing the Cost of Reservoir Removal
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Approved Date: 10/23/2006
Recommendation: Do Not Fund

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-384-00-ISRP-20060831
Project: 2007-384-00 - Reducing the Cost of Reservoir Removal
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 8/31/2006
Final Round ISRP Date: None
Final Round ISRP Rating: Does Not Meet Scientific Review Criteria
Final Round ISRP Comment:
This is an inadequately written proposal to conduct a design contest among engineering students to find a more cost-effective means of reservoir removal than those considered to date by the Army Corps of Engineers. The proposal provides some information about the contest but is quite generally written and is not persuasive as to why alternatives are needed, why the Corps will not be analyzing an expanded list of alternatives should breaching become a realistic possibility, or why the contest would be the best way to go. No explanation or itemization of the $10k budget is provided.

The background section discusses different perspectives on the problem of Snake River juvenile salmon mortality and the question of improving survival. It contains excerpts from the Corps report "Lower Snake River Juvenile Salmon Migration Feasibility" to demonstrate that although dam breaching is identified by the Corps as a less preferable alternative to major system improvements, it may become a more realistic alternative if adaptive migration efforts are not successful. Some description of alternatives being considered by the Corps is presented. The intent of the proposal is to reduce economic effects on the ratepayers of Lower Snake River dam and reservoir removal. A summary list of major costs associated with these removals is included with a more detailed description of one (turbine modification) as an example of how costs might vary with different designs.

The single objective of this proposal is to expand the list of alternatives to be considered in a re-evaluation study, which would follow a failed "check-in." It seeks to lower the economic costs of dam removal. The methods section describes some alternatives that the Corps did not consider which might be lower cost. It describes some explanatory information from the Corps as to why certain configurations would not be considered, then notes that this information should be kept from the public until after the competition to ensure fairness. The proposal does not indicate whether this information is already available in published form. The proposal states that entries will be judged on "economic viability" and "affordability," without explanation of how these are defined. A list of work elements provides a general description of how the contest will be conducted.
Documentation Links:

Legal Assessment (In-Lieu)

Assessment Number: 2007-384-00-INLIEU-20090521
Project Number: 2007-384-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 10/6/2006
In Lieu Rating: Problems Exist
Cost Share Rating: None
Comment: Funding student competition (schools authorized/required).

Capital Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-384-00-CAPITAL-20090618
Project Number: 2007-384-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 2/27/2007
Capital Rating: Does Not Qualify for Capital Funding
Capital Asset Category: None
Comment: None

Project Relationships: None