John Shurts

General Counsel - Northwest Power & Conservation Council

John Shurts is the General Counsel for the Northwest Power and Conservation Council. The Council is an interstate compact agency based in Portland, Oregon, authorized by the Northwest Power Act of 1980 and consisting of eight members appointed by the governors of Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. The Council develops and oversees a regional power plan for the Pacific Northwest and a fish and wildlife protection and mitigation program for the Columbia River Basin. Shurts also has a Ph.D. degree in American History from the University of Oregon, with an emphasis on environmental and legal history, and is the author of a book on the origin and development of Indian reserved water rights: The Winters Doctrine in its Social and Legal Context, 1880s- 1930s. He is an adjunct professor at Portland State University and the University of Portland (and has been at the law school at Lewis and Clark), teaching courses in environmental, water, energy, and natural resources law and policy. In 2008, Shurts also served as a member of the Anadromous Fish Independent Review Panel empanelled by the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for a comprehensive review of the Central Valley Project’s Anadromous Fish Restoration Program. John is a member of Carpe Diem West’s Water, Energy & Climate Change team.