Bonneville Power Administration: Ratemaking

Bonneville Power Administration: Ratemaking

Current Status:

Date Filed:
Feb 3, 2021

Case Title:
Advocates for the West Intervened in Bonneville Power Administration's Bi-annual rate case

Staff attorney(s):
Andrew Missel


Idaho Conservation League

Great Old Broads for Wilderness

Idaho River United

To Protect:

Native Fish Species


Case Information:

February 3, 2023Advocates for the West filed our reply brief.

October 21, 2022 — Advocates for the West filed an opening brief urging the Court to hold that BPA violated the Northwest Power Act in making its BP-22 rate decision, to remedy that violation by remanding BPA’s decision, and to order injunctive relief.

June 16, 2022 — Advocates for the West filed a petition for review under the Northwest Power Act, urging the Ninth Circuit Court to review BPA’s 2021 rate decision. BPA’s flat funding of mitigation efforts further threatens already declining salmon and steelhead populations and impairs the implementation of important mitigation projects.

May 11, 2021 — Advocates for the West filed our initial brief opposing the BP-22 Settlement Proposal put forth by BPA. Our case argues that the settlement and the process leading up to it violates the Northwest Power Act’s requirement of “equitable treatment” for fish and wildlife.

A larger-than-expected revenue forecast has left BPA in the position of being able to lower power rates for the first time in years, but BPA wants to keep rates flat and use the “extra” money to ameliorate its debt crisis. BPA’s customers, on the other hand, want lower rates. Our case argues that the law requires consideration of a third option: that BPA comply with the “equitable treatment” mandate by using some of the surplus revenue to improve its fish and wildlife program, which is woefully underfunded.

February 3, 2021 — Advocates for the West intervened in Bonneville Power Administration’s (BPA) biannual “rate case” — an administrative proceeding in which BPA sets its power and transmission rates for the next two years. We filed a direct testimony from our clients, calling out BPA’s insufficient consideration of the impacts of its ratemaking plan on fish and wildlife in the Columbia River Basin, specifically threatened wild salmon and steelhead populations.