Water Power West
Water Power West is the premier independent news journal of hydroelectricity and other water-powered energy resources in Western North America.
Published since 2004 as Relicensing Review and under its new name since late 2016, Water Power West covers a broad and expanding range of topics: policies, regulation, legislation, hydro relicensing, new and proposed developments, legal proceedings, emerging technologies, weather and climate conditions, and more.
With new issues every other month, Water Power West highlights meaningful developments relevant to water-powered energy around the region. The newsletter is targeted for readers with a professional interest in power generation from moving water, and is written and edited by a team of skilled, experienced energy journalists.
Water Power West will keep you well-informed on key regional news and information about what remains a major source of U.S. renewable energy. While the era of big, new Western dams is largely gone, hydro remains an important energy resource throughout the West, and particularly in the Pacific Northwest.
Latest WPW News
[March 12, 2019 / No. 15]
Council Briefed on Flexible Spill Agreement for Northwest Federal Dams
The Northwest Power and Conservation Council got a first-hand explanation from the federal agencies, states and tribes involved in a flexible spill agreement that goes into effect in April, if Washington state modifies its total dissolved gas limits. The players who negotiated for almost a year to develop a spring spill regime to replace last year’s 24-hours-a-day, spill-to-gas-cap program offered perspectives on their end of the deal.
Bankruptcy Pushes PG&E to Abandon 9.2-MW Potter Valley Project
Citing “challenging financial circumstances”—a reference to its bankruptcy proceedings—Pacific Gas and Electric told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in January it was withdrawing from Potter Valley Project relicensing activities, and terminating efforts to transfer and sell it. River advocates fighting to have the dams removed to revive struggling fish populations celebrated the news, and said they hoped the landslide hazard of the project’s Scott Dam would now be addressed.
FERC Working to Implement 2018 Water Infrastructure Bill
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission expects to finalize rules in April that will speed the licensing of hydropower facilities at nonpowered dams and closed-loop pumped-storage projects, as directed by a 2018 federal bill. Among other provisions, the rules will provide processes aimed at making licensing decisions within two years. Also in the works is compiling a list of nonpowered federal dams with high nonfederal development potential, and implementing guidance on closed-loop pumped-storage projects at abandoned mine sites.
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