Next round of Columbia River Treaty negotiations upcoming
Katrine Conroy, B.C.’s Minister Responsible for the Columbia River Treaty, says she is confident the under-renegotiation treaty will be successfully modernized ahead of the next round of talks between Canada and the United States.
The one-day virtual session on Dec. 9 will continue discussions about the future of the Columbia River Treaty.
“At the last round of negotiations in June 2020, Canada tabled a proposal outlining a framework for a modernized treaty, developed collaboratively by Canada, B.C. and Columbia Basin Indigenous Nations,” Conroy stated Nov. 29.
“The two countries have been in talks to modernize the historical transboundary agreement since May 2018, and have covered a range of topics over the course of 10 rounds of meetings. The key areas of interest are flood risk management, hydroelectric power and ecosystems. Canada has also raised the issues of increasing co-ordination of Libby Dam operations and increasing flexibility for Canadian operations,” she added.
“The Canadian negotiating team, which includes Canada, B.C. and the Ktunaxa, Secwépemc and Syilx Okanagan Nations, has continued its co-operative efforts over the past year and a half, advancing work to strengthen Canadian positions and seek improvements in the basin. Input from local governments and residents continue to inform this work.
“I am pleased to see these discussions moving forward and am confident that, as long as both Canada and the United States recognize the value in continuing to create and equitably share benefits between our two countries, we will be successful in modernizing the treaty,” Conroy concluded.
Lead image: A view of Lake Koocanusa, looking north from the Koocanusa Bridge south of Rexford, Montana. e-KNOW file photo