Columbia Basin Trust
Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) is hosting an information session about the Columbia River Treaty (CRT) in Golden on Tuesday, November 8. This session is hosted in partnership with local governments and the CRT Local Governments’ Committee.
“The information session will help people who live in the Canadian portion of the Columbia Basin better understand what the CRT is, how it works and what considerations exist for the future,” says Neil Muth, CBT President and CEO.
The event will happen on Tuesday, November 8 at the Golden Seniors’ Centre (1401 9th Street South, Open House-2 to 7 p.m., Free Dinner-6 to 7 p.m., Presentation-7 to 9 p.m.)
The CRT is an international agreement between Canada and the United States to coordinate flood control and optimize hydroelectric power generation on both sides of the border. Under the 1964 treaty, three dams were constructed in Canada, including Mica, Duncan and Hugh Keenleyside. A fourth dam, Libby, was constructed in Montana. Its reservoir, the Koocanusa, extends 67 kilometres into Canada.
The CRT has no official expiry date, but has a minimum length of 60 years, which is met in September 2024. Either Canada or the United States can terminate many of the provisions of the agreement effective any time after September 2024, provided written notice is filed at least 10 years in advance (2014). While no decision has been made by either Canada or the United States on the future of the current treaty, given the importance of the issues, and the approaching date of 2014, both countries are now conducting studies and exploring future options for the CRT.
“Our primary role with respect to the CRT is to act as an information resource for Basin residents,” says Muth, adding that CBT does not make decisions with respect to the CRT. “Consultation on the CRT is a Provincial responsibility.”
Working with the Columbia Shuswap Regional District and the Town of Golden, CBT is bringing experts on the CRT and international water management from across Canada to Golden.
“Having people with this much knowledge about the current treaty come to our community is an excellent opportunity for all of us to learn more,” says Christina Benty, Mayor, Town of Golden.
“This is a chance to talk with experts and our neighbours about something that has influenced the geography and social fabric of this region for decades,” says Ron Oszust, Columbia Shuswap Regional District Director.
CBT is hosting similar sessions in other communities as well as online information sessions via the internet. CBT has also prepared documents, videos and other resources to help residents learn more.
Learn more about the CRT at www.cbt.org/crt. CBT delivers economic, social and environmental benefits to the residents of the Columbia Basin. To learn more about CBT programs and initiatives, visit www.cbt.org or call 1.800.505.8998.