Light Reading - August 2022

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Inland Power is my cooperative!


August 2022

Inland Power

Dams and salmon

inside... SAFETY Working around powerlines

YOUR COOPERATIVE 2022 scholarship recipients EFFICIENCY Cool off efficiently


he conversation surrounding hydropower–specifically the dams in our region–has been a hot topic for decades. Advocates of hydropower know the dams as vital resources for clean energy, agriculture, world trade and recreation. Opponents to the hydro system claim the dams kill the salmon whose lives begin and end in our rivers. Reputable agencies such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have conducted extensive studies and have found that not only do dams and fish coexist, but salmon returns on the Columbia and Snake Rivers have increased thanks to adjustments to the system. Fish ladder technology and billions of dollars in fisheries research have allowed salmon to navigate the dams with success rates very similar to those of salmon in free-flowing rivers. Numerous dam v. fish studies have been conducted–all of which concluded that

dam breaching is the least desirable outcome. Governor Inslee has now partnered with Senator Patty Murray to conduct another study. The draft MurrayInslee report looks at Lower Snake River Dam replacement in a vacuum, which threatens to jeopardize the Pacific Northwest’s clean energy future. The report fails to recognize likely over 100,000 megawatts of wind/solar/ batteries will have to be added to the region over the next two decades to fulfill Oregon and Washington’s clean energy laws. Taking out the dams practically guarantees these timelines will not be met, and we’ll have to extend the life of fossil-fueled resources or risk blackouts. Removing these dams could cause electric rates to soar 25 percent. In an ironic contradiction, Governor Inslee has recently launched a fundraising campaign that highlights the dire situation that shows our energy resources are

already lacking. He talks about extreme weather events like heat domes and extreme freezes, and how it is vital that we have an abundant resource of clean, renewable energy. Furthermore, the governor vetoed a bipartisan bill earlier this year that addressed resource adequacy as it relates to electric service. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have expressed frustration with the governor for dismissing this massive bipartisan effort. The situation on the lower Snake River is serious. While the Murray-Inslee draft report predicts upwards of $27 billion, the potential costs are actually quite higher. We have the results from countless studies that tell us what we need to do. We have the technology in place that enables dams and salmon to coexist. It is time for this discussion to conclude. To learn more, visit






Congratulations Scholarship Winners!

Abigail Allen Spokane Valley, WA Eastern WA University

Marissa Andrews Spokane, WA Washington St. University

Connor Bly Newman Lake, WA Whitworth University

Ashley Boswell Greenacres, WA Westmont College

Ava Budde Rosalia, WA Northwest College

John Campbell Colbert, WA Spokane Falls Community College

Ethan Jaeger Deer Park, WA Washington St. University

Caleb Kartchner Greenacres, WA Utah State University

Curtis Keller Tenino, WA Northwest Lineman College

Elizabeth Kovich Greenacres, WA University of Washington

Haley Neumiller Colbert, WA University of Washington

Rylie Pease Cheney, WA Duke University

Emily Scrupps Ritzville, WA University of Idaho

Carter Steveson Almira, WA Montana St. University

Annika Tee Latah, WA University of Idaho

Hope Storro Spokane Valley, WA Eastern WA University

Christina Ward Latah, WA Washington St. University

Cool down efficiently

Working around powerlines Whether you’re a homeowner or contractor, chances are at some point we all will need to perform some work outdoors in the vicinity of power lines. There are several things you should know to stay safe working around power lines this summer. Before starting work do a quick hazard assessment. Consider where you’ll be working, what kinds of tools or equipment you’ll be using, and identify any power lines in the area. If you’ll be disturbing the soil, be sure to call 8-1-1 at least two business days beforehand to have the locations of underground lines marked.


s summer presses on, the temperatures continue to climb. There are multiple options when it comes to cooling your home. Central air systems are popular, but they can be expensive. Another option is a room or window unit. Room or window air conditioners cool rooms rather than the entire home or business. Since they cool a smaller space, room air conditioners are less expensive to operate than central units, even though their efficiency is generally lower. Smaller room air conditioners, those drawing less than 7.5 amps of electricity can be plugged into any 15- or 20-amp, 120-volt household circuit that is not shared with any other major appliances. Larger room air conditioners, those drawing more than 7.5 amps need their own dedicated 115-volt circuit. The largest models require a dedicated 240-volt circuit. Energy efficiency of room air conditioners A room air conditioner’s efficiency is measured by the energy efficiency ratio (EER). The EER is the ratio of the cooling capacity (in British thermal units (BTU) per hour) to the power input (in watts). The higher the EER rating, the more efficient the air conditioner. When buying a new room air conditioner, look for the ENERGY STAR label. Sizing and selecting a room air conditioner Proper sizing is very important for efficient air conditioning. Buying a larger capacity room air conditioner than is required won’t make you feel more comfortable during the hot summer months. In fact, a room air conditioner that’s too big for the area will perform less efficiently and

less effectively than a smaller, properly sized unit. If you are mounting your air conditioner near the corner of a room, look for a unit that can direct its airflow in the desired direction for your room layout. If you need to mount the air conditioner at the narrow end of a long room, then look for a fan control known as “Power Thrust” or “Super Thrust” that sends the cooled air farther into the room. Other features to look for include: • A filter that slides out easily for regular cleaning • Logically arranged controls • A digital readout for the thermostat setting • A built-in timer However you choose to cool down this summer, be sure you choose the right air conditioner for your room size. If you have questions, contact your conservation team by emailing

If you’ll be working around overhead lines, make sure to keep plenty of distance between yourself, including tools or equipment you’re using, and power lines. For work around the distribution lines that bring power to buildings the minimum distance is 10 feet. A greater clearance is required if operating a crane or working around higher voltage lines. If you’re not sure of the minimum required clearance check with your local electric utility. If your work needs to be performed within the minimum required clearance distance you’ll need to contact the utility to have lines de-energized. Choose the right tools and equipment, and know how to operate them safely around power lines. Keep conductive objects away from power lines and never use metal ladders around electricity – choose wood or fiberglass instead. If digging around underground lines, always dig carefully and only with hand tools within two feet of locate marks. Be sure to follow these tips and work safely around power lines this summer – your life depends on it!

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2022 Inland Power scholarship recipients

nland Power and Light is proud to announce this year’s scholarship recipients.

We at Inland Power and Light believe this year’s recipients of the Inland Power Excellence Award have both intelligence and character and are on their way to making our world a brighter place. These young people have excelled both academically and as philanthropists in our communities. Since 1992, Inland Power has proudly helped fund our top youth in their quest for higher education. Each year, Inland Power awards a minimum of 15 - $1,000 scholarships. Students may apply this scholarship to further education at a community college, university or trade school. This year, the committee awarded scholarships to 17 students. Applications were judged by members of the Inland Power Community Foundation committee. Judges reviewed applications with students’ names redacted to ensure the integrity of the judging process. Students were evaluated on grades, essay, personal profile and letters of recommendation. For their essay, students

were able to choose from six different topics ranging from the economy and technology, to current events and their specific career choice. The selection process was not an easy one with 55 highly qualified applicants. The futures of all our applicants are indeed bright. Inland Power applauds success and we know these students are on their way to bright careers and lives. We are proud of them and can’t wait to see what they accomplish in their respective new chapters. If you know a deserving student who is eligible for an Inland Power scholarship, check out our scholarship page, which can be found at This year’s recipients are listed inside.