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Trudeau and Biden announce preliminary agreement on Columbia River Treaty
The Grand Coulee Dam creates Lake Roosevelt, the first reservoir on the Columbia River in the United States. (PHOTO Capital Press)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced an agreement in principle between Canada and the United States to modernize the Columbia River Treaty.

In a statement this morning, Trudeau said the two countries have always been loyal partners when it comes to protecting shared waters.

He said the agreement, which has been in place for more than 50 years, has played a crucial role in reducing flood damage and providing clean energy to millions of homes, businesses and industries in both countries.

The Canadian negotiating team is a partnership between the Canadian federal government, the province of British Columbia, the Ktunaxa, the Secw├ępemc and the Syilx Okanagan Nations. “This agreement in principle is the result of extensive collaboration, particularly with Indigenous and local communities, to ensure that all interests are heard, represented and considered,” Trudeau said.

The update would ensure continued flood risk management and hydropower cooperation for the Columbia River and include provisions not addressed in the original agreement, such as ecosystem health and Indigenous cultural values.

Trudeau said the agreement in principle was an important step toward renewing the Columbia River Treaty. “Together with the United States, we reaffirm our historic alliance, our unwavering friendship, and our commitment to improving the lives of people on both sides of our shared border – and building a freer, fairer, safer, and more prosperous world for all,” he said.

For further information, please contact the Prime Minister of Canada.