the film


Commentaries and editorials

Head of Bonneville Power Administration Retires

by Staff
Oregon Public Broadcasting, June 19, 2012

BPA Administrator Stephen Wright The Bonneville Power Administration's long-serving chief is stepping down.

Steve Wright was the acting BPA administrator in 2000, when the western US was struggling with an energy crisis. He served as permanent head for a decade and now says he's retiring in January.

BPA manages power – especially the hydropower from Columbia and Snake River dams. It's a federal agency, but carries out energy plans created by the Northwest Power and Conservation Council whose members are appointed by governors.

The federal Department of Energy is planning a competitive search to find a new BPA administrator by January. A BPA official says the idea is to insulate the hiring decision from political influence.

Under Steve Wright, BPA has tangled with environmentalists over the plight of threatened salmon, and more recently with the wind industry, over management of the energy grid.

In a statement, Energy Secretary Stephen Chu noted that Wright was "the rare chief executive" who'd started with an entry-level job.

Head of Bonneville Power Administration Retires
Oregon Public Broadcasting, June 19, 2012

See what you can learn

learn more on topics covered in the film
see the video
read the script
learn the songs
discussion forum
salmon animation