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MEDIA RELEASE

June 27, 2002

IJC authorizes reductions in
Namakan Lake outflows

In light of the sharp rise in water levels on Rainy Lake and the Rainy River, the International Joint Commission (IJC) has authorized reductions in the outflow from Namakan Lake, taking into account conditions on Namakan Lake and upstream, on Rainy Lake and downstream, and at the powerhouse in International Falls.

The IJC is concerned about the impacts of current and potential flood conditions throughout the Rainy Lake and Rainy River watershed and wishes to minimize the harm without putting any portion of the watershed at undue risk.

Water levels on Rainy Lake have continued to increase and today are approximately 82 centimetres (2.7 feet) above the emergency level and approximately 67 centimetres (2.2 feet) above the level at which all gates from Rainy Lake must be open. Water levels on Namakan Lake are slightly above the rule curve and the emergency level, but approximately 12 centimetres (0.4 feet) below the level at which all gates from Namakan Lake must be open. Rising water levels on the Rainy River, immediately downstream of the dam on Rainy Lake, have entered Boise Cascade Corporationís powerhouse.

The IJC has authorized its International Rainy Lake Board of Control to direct Boise Cascade Corporation and Abitibi-Consolidated Corporation to deviate from the requirements of the standing Consolidated Order of January 18, 2001 in the Matter of Emergency Regulation of the Level of Rainy Lake and of Other Boundary Waters in the Rainy Lake Watershed.

The International Joint Commission regulates the levels of Rainy and Namakan Lakes under the 1938 Convention for Emergency Regulation of Rainy Lake and Boundary Waters in the Rainy Lake Watershed.

For more information, contact:
Frank Bevacqua
IJC Washington
(202) 736-9024
Fabien Lengelle
IJC Ottawa
(613) 995-0088
Ed Eaton
International Rainy Lake
Board of Control
(651) 290-5617
Rick Walden
International Rainy Lake
Board of Control
(819) 997-2529
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