Sacramento Municipal Utility District announced it has reached agreement in principle with parties to allow relicensing of the 647.726-MW Upper American River hydroelectric project, with the addition of a proposed 400-MW Iowa Hill pumped-storage development.
SMUD notified the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission of the agreement with state and federal resource agencies and non-governmental organizations on relicensing the project on California’s American River. The utility now plans to work with other participants to finalize the settlement agreement. The settlement then would go to FERC for review by late 2007.
The agreement in principle includes:
o Agreement for licensing the proposed Iowa Hill pumped-storage development;
o Flexibility for SMUD’s operations to assure response to customer energy needs, reliability, and emergencies;
o Increased flows in various streams to improve aquatic habitat;
o Improved summer reservoir levels to enhance recreation, enhanced recreational boating, new releases for whitewater boating;
o Improvements to project recreational facilities over 20 years; and
o Support for a 50-year relicense.
�We believe that we successfully bridged our differences and have found a balanced solution that accounts for energy requirements, local grid reliability, environmental needs, and recreational opportunities,� SMUD Assistant General Manager Jim Shetler said.
SMUD’s original 50-year license for Upper American River (No. 2101) expires in July 2007. Its relicense application includes plans to build and operate Iowa Hill in El Dorado County.
The Upper American River project has eight powerhouses and 11 reservoirs, and generates enough power to meet 20 percent of SMUD’s customer demand. In a normal water year, the project provides about 1,800 gigawatt-hours.
For information, contact David Hanson, Project Manager, Hydro Relicensing, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, 6301 South St., Mail Stop A352, Sacramento, CA 95817-1899 USA; (1) 916-732-6733; Fax: (1) 916-732-6771; E-mail: email@example.com; Internet: www.smud.org.