Klamath Water

In this Aug. 21, 2009 file photo, water trickles over Copco 1 Dam on the Klamath River outside Hornbrook, Calif. The process to relicense the hydroelectric dam system on the Klamath River has restarted again as historic settlement agreements to remove four of the dams have thus far failed to make headway in Congress this year. The Klamath River basin, which straddles Oregon and California, has long been the site of intense political fights over the sharing of scarce water between farms and fish. The agreements to remove the dams, hammered out by farmers, tribes, environmentalists and states, are a compromise aimed to restore the river for imperiled salmon and steelhead, and give farmers greater certainty about irrigation water. (AP Photo/Jeff Barnard, File)

PORTLAND — The process to relicense the hydroelectric dam system on the Klamath River is moving forward as settlement agreements to remove four of the dams have failed to make headway in Congress.

The Klamath River Basin in Oregon and California has long seen disputes over sharing water. Agreements to remove the dams were hammered out by farmers, tribes, environmentalists and states. They aim to restore the river for salmon and give farmers certainty about irrigation water.

Congress must pass legislation to implement the agreements, but Republicans have blocked it for years. U.S. Rep. Greg Walden's office said he would convene a meeting on Thursday with congressional leaders to discuss "a way forward" on Klamath water issues.

Studies show dam removal is less expensive than making upgrades to the dams.

A more detailed, locally written story will appear in Thursday's H&N.

Gerry O'Brien is the editor for The Herald and News. Email him at gobrien@heraldandnews.com or follow him in Twitter at  @gerry_obrien1