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FERC issues permit to study Intermountain Pumped Storage in Utah

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued a preliminary permit to Premium Energy Holdings LLC to study the feasibility of the proposed Intermountain Pumped Storage Project in Millard County, Utah.

The closed-loop pumped storage project would have a capacity of 1,200 MW to 2,000 MW and consist of:

Two new reservoirs, a lower reservoir upstream of the existing DMAD Reservoir and one of three alternative upper reservoirs in the Canyon Mountains. The lower reservoir would have a total storage capacity of 48,915 acre-feet. Storage capacity of the upper reservoir would vary depending on the alternative chosen, from 28,063 acre-feet to 39,612 acre-feet.

A 500-foot-long, 125-foot-wide, 150-foot-high underground powerhouse containing five 400-MW turbine-generator units

Two new 11-mile-long, 345-kV transmission lines to the existing Intermountain AC switchyard

Estimated annual generation from the project would be 6,900 GWh.

The preliminary permit is effective Dec. 1, 2019, and ends (at the permittee’s request) either 24 months from the effective date or on the date that a development application submitted by the permittee has been accepted for filing, whichever occurs first.

According to FERC, “Section 4(f) of the FPA authorizes the Commission to issue preliminary permits for the purpose of enabling prospective applicants for a hydropower license to secure the data and perform the acts required by section 9 of the FPA, which in turn sets forth the material that must accompany an application for license. The purpose of a preliminary permit is to preserve the right of the permit holder to have the first priority in applying for a license for the project that is being studied. Because a permit is issued only to allow the permit holder to investigate the feasibility of a project while the permittee conducts investigations and secures necessary data to determine the feasibility of the proposed project and to prepare a license application, it grants no land-disturbing or other property rights.”