Franklin D. Roosevelt

Statement on Executive Order 8526 Coordinating the Power Resources of the Columbia River

August 24, 1940

The President announced at his Cabinet meeting yesterday that he is taking steps to coordinate the great power resources of the Columbia River available for the requirements of national defense, industrial development and domestic consumption. By combining the marketing of power produced at the Bonneville and Grand Coulee Dams under one marketing agency, the transmission network now under construction by the Bonneville Power Administration will carry the low-cost power from both developments throughout the Pacific Northwest.

To bring this vitally important step into effect the President and the Secretary of the Interior are preparing an Executive Order combining the marketing of power from Grand Coulee and Bonneville Dams under the Bonneville Administration which was originally set up as a temporary agency for the marketing of Bonneville power. The present emergency makes even more pressing the need for coordinating the power facilities of the two projects and for providing a single agency for marketing the power in the region.

The present national defense emergency makes evident the fact that the many strategic and critical mineral reserves found in the Pacific Northwest are a matter of national interest. An abundance of low-cost electric power available in the Columbia River region will accelerate the supply of necessary minerals for national defense because electricity is an important factor in the processing of many of these minerals. It will also provide power for war industries in this region.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Statement on Executive Order 8526 Coordinating the Power Resources of the Columbia River Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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