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Avista to adjust its hydro operations due to recent weather events
Lake Spokane drawdown canceled


Jan. 19, 2011
: Avista Utilities has adjusted its hydro operations for the Spokane River Hydroelectric Project in response to rising Coeur d’Alene and St. Joe River flows and Coeur d’Alene Lake levels, caused by recent rainfall and warmer temperatures. More specifically, the planned drawdown at Lake Spokane, the reservoir created by Long Lake Dam, has been cancelled.

 

Avista’s Spokane River Project includes Post Falls Dam, which affects the level of Lake Coeur d’Alene, as well the Spokane River and the downstream Upper Falls, Monroe Street, Nine Mile and Long Lake Dams. Coeur d’Alene Lake was roughly two feet above its summer full-pool elevation of 2,128’ on January 19 and river flows in downtown Spokane reached 21,000 cubic feet per second (cfs).

 

In an effort to maintain the level of Coeur d’Alene Lake and to prevent flooding, Avista has opened all spill gates at Post Falls Dam. At the same time our operators are working to keep Lake Spokane slightly below full pool to help prevent flood conditions near the confluence of Little Spokane River and Lake Spokane. As flows decrease Avista will probably bring the Lake Spokane elevations up near summer full-pool levels. 

 

Depending on weather conditions and subsequent levels along the river and in Lake Coeur d’Alene, Avista will reassess whether to draw down Lake Spokane as previously planned.

 

Property owners and lake-users are reminded to make necessary preparations, including removing boats from the water, and removing or securing docks and boathouses to accommodate changing water conditions.

 

Water levels are subject to change quickly due to a variety of factors, including weather. Lake and river users should always be alert to signs of such changes and exercise the highest level of personal caution and safety when using the waterway.

 

Updated reservoir level information is available by calling Avista's recorded Lake Information Line at (509) 495-8043. Current lake and river levels can be seen online at http://www.avistautilities.com/inside/resources/Pages/waterflow.aspx.

 

Avista Corp. is an energy company involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. Avista Utilities is our operating division that provides electric service to 357,000 customers and natural gas to 316,000 customers. Our service territory covers 30,000 square miles in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and parts of southern and eastern Oregon, with a population of 1.5 million. Avista’s primary, non-regulated subsidiary is Advantage IQ. Our stock is traded under the ticker symbol “AVA.” For more information about Avista, please visit www.avistacorp.com.

 

This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding the company’s current expectations. Forward-looking statements are all statements other than historical facts. Such statements speak only as of the date of the news release and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the company’s control, which could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations. These risks and uncertainties include, in addition to those discussed herein, all of the factors discussed in the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2009, and the Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended Sept. 30, 2010.

Avista Corp. and the Avista Corp. logo are trademarks of Avista Corporation.

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