Fall River is an electric cooperative, owned by those served and governed by an elected nine-member Board of Directors.
Fall River Rural Electric Cooperative serves electrical and propane consumers in three states (Idaho, Montana and Wyoming), covering 8 counties (Fremont, Madison, Jefferson, Clark, and Teton ID, along with the counties of Lincoln and Teton WY and Gallatin MT) covering 2,524 square miles. Fall River has 13,082 electric owner-members,15,575 electric meters and nearly 5,000 propane customers.
If you receive energy from Fall River, you are not a customer, you are a owner-member of the Cooperative. Along with other Fall River members, you own:
- Four hydroelectric facilities (Chester, Island Park, Buffalo, and Felt) on the Henry’s Fork river watershed and infrastructure at those facilities to enhance our area’s fisheries. [Felt is currently leased to a third party & will return to Fall River operation in 2020.]
- 222 miles of transmission line
- 2,150 miles of distribution lines
- 28 substations
- 3 offices (Ashton, Driggs and West Yellowstone)
Fall River is committed to safely and economically provide reliable energy and other services which bring value to its membership.
For more information about the services provided by Fall River, please see Fall River Folder.pdf
What is the Cooperative Difference?
Four out of every ten Americans depend on cooperatives for a variety of goods and services, including utility, agricultural and food services. Nearly 1,000 electric cooperatives provide power to an estimated 42 million people in 47 states.
Electric cooperatives are different from investor-owned utilities; Cooperatives are:
- Organized and owned by their members and with the sole aim to serve these members.
- Democratically controlled by members through annual board elections.
- Provide power at-cost to members on a non-profit basis.
- Allocate any margins back to members as patronage capital.
- Serve an average of seven members per mile, while investor-owned utilities serve an average of 35 customers per mile.
Your Power Mix
Just over 10 percent of the power used by members is generated by three hydroelectric facilities owned by the Cooperative: Island Park Hydro, Buffalo River Hydro, and Chester Hydro.
Island Park Hydro and Buffalo Hydro were the first two hydroelectric projects in the state that were certified as low impact by the Low Impact Hydropower Institute. These two projects provide renewable power for Fall Rivers Green Power program.
The Chester Hydroelectric Project was completed in 2014 and its three turbines will generate enough electrical energy to power up to 1,200 homes. The project also entailed the installation of two fish screens on adjacent irrigation canals to help keep fish in the Henry’s Fork.
A new fish ladder on the dam now allows fish in the lower river to move up past the dam for the first time since the dam was built in 1939. Conservation organizations, including the Henry’s Fork Foundation, Trout Unlimited, and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition secured funding for the ladder, which cost nearly $500,000.
Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) supplies the remaining power used by members. BPA is a quasi-federal agency that sells the power from federal hydroelectric dams and other generating plants in the Northwest. Roughly 90 percent of Bonneville’s power is from hydroelectric projects.