Rocky Mountain Power requests renewal of operating license for Weber hydroelectric project

Published on June 13, 2018 by Kevin Randolph

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Rocky Mountain Power recently submitted its application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to renew its federal operating license for the Weber hydroelectric project, a 3.85 megawatt (MW) run-of-the-river project in Utah.

The final license application includes a series of project environmental improvements, proposed mitigation measures and operational refinements and is the product of a consultation process that began in March 2015.

“This application represents the cooperative effort of Rocky Mountain Power, state and federal agencies, and recreational, fishing and other public interest organizations,” Eve Davies, Weber relicensing project manager for Rocky Mountain Power, said. “Their hard work, important suggestions, and review produced an application that satisfies the multiple-use considerations required by the federal licensing process. We’re grateful for their involvement and input.”

The license application proposes the continued operation of the plant as a run-of-the-river project with no significant water storage.

Operating agreements in the current license and included in the proposed new license ensure a minimum flow of at least 34 to 50 cubic-feet-per-second in the river, depending on the season and annual runoff forecasts.

The application also includes several protection, mitigation, and enhancement measures, including the construction of a fish ladder, a preliminary agreement to provide potential whitewater boating flows in the project reach, for four-hour periods on four Saturdays each year, the construction of a year-round picnic site and improvement of two existing pedestrian trails.

The Weber hydroelectric project is located on the Weber River near the mouth of Weber Canyon approximately nine miles southeast of City of Ogden, Utah. It has a capacity of 3.85 MW and average annual generation of 16,926 megawatt-hours.

A predecessor company of Rocky Mountain Power completed construction of the facility in 1910. The first federal license was issued in 1938 and was renewed in 1970 and 1990.