The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has certified incremental generation at the 2,164-MW Bath County pumped-storage project in Virginia to be eligible for federal renewable energy production tax credits.
FERC issued an order Feb. 12 certifying incremental generation gained from overhaul and modernization of three pump-turbine units at the project (No. 2716), on Back and Little Back creeks in Bath County.
Based upon information provided by licensee Dominion Resources, FERC certified incremental generation of 17,191,692 kWh, based on 5,730,564 kWh for each unit. The improvements resulted in a 0.145 percent increase in generation for each of the three units, and a total increase of 0.435 percent. FERC also certified the historical generation baseline for the project’s six units — generation before the improvements ï¿½- to average 3,952,113,100 kWh.
In requesting certification, Dominion Resources cited work performed in 2006, 2007, and 2008. Units 3, 6, and 1 were retrofitted with improved runners, wicket gates, stay vanes, and wearing rings. Unit 3 re-entered operation March 2006. Unit 6 re-entered operation in March 2007. Unit 1 is expected to resume operation in early April.
The Energy Policy Act of 2005 applies the federal tax credit incentive to incremental production from efficiency improvements or capacity additions made to existing hydroelectric facilities placed in service after Aug. 8, 2005, and before Jan. 1, 2009.
Congress recently failed to extend tax incentives for hydropower and other renewables beyond the Jan. 1, 2009, date. However, new legislation would extend the production tax credit for three years, and add marine and hydrokinetic renewable energy to the list of qualified energy projects. (HNN 2/21/08)
Since 2005, FERC has certified incremental hydropower generation at more than a dozen other hydroelectric projects for renewable energy production tax credits. (HNN 1/10/08)