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During my visit to Ottawa in March 2023, Prime Minister Trudeau and I recommitted to modernizing the Columbia River Treaty.

As Prime Minister Trudeau visits Washington, DC today, I am pleased to announce that our countries have reached agreement in principle on key elements of a modernized treaty.

After 60 years, the treaty must be updated to reflect climate change and the changing needs of communities that depend on this vital waterway. The Columbia River and its tributaries are of great importance to indigenous peoples who have historically relied on this ecosystem and the abundant resources it provides. These waterways are also vital to our nation’s economy: they generate 40% of U.S. hydroelectric power, irrigate $8 billion worth of agricultural products, and transport 42 million tons of commercial goods annually.

For 60 years, the United States and Canada have managed these waterways together under the Columbia River Treaty. Now our two countries have found common ground on how we will manage them together over the next 20 years.

By modernizing this treaty, we will amplify the voices of Indigenous peoples in the United States and Canada. We will rebalance energy coordination between the United States and Canada so that the United States can keep more clean hydropower at home and Canada has more opportunities to import from and export to the U.S. market—which is critical for both countries to achieve our clean energy goals.

And the United States will benefit from planned water storage in dams based on the Canadian agreement, which will help control floods and protect vulnerable communities.

In the coming weeks, the United States and Canada will continue to work together on a draft treaty amendment that addresses these key elements and will initiate the process in both countries.

Together, we will continue to manage this precious shared natural resource on behalf of all people.

/Public release. This material from the original organization/authors may be time-sensitive in nature and has been edited for clarity, style and length. Mirage.News does not represent any institutional position or party, and all views, positions and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the authors. View full content here.