Otter Tail Power Company urges public involvement in relicensing process for its five hydroelectric plants

Published on May 25, 2017 by Daily Energy Insider Reports

Otter Tail Power Company this week encouraged the public to get involved in the relicensing process for its five hydroelectric plants along the Otter Tail River in Minnesota.

The company invited the public to submit comments on the potential relicensing to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and to attend Otter Tail’s open house at the Bigwood Event Center on
June 5 to learn more about the power plants and the relicensing process.

“If you’re concerned about fish migration, sturgeon, recreational activities, or safety, we encourage you to attend our open house and talk to us,” Cris Oehler, vice president of public relations for the company, said. “And if you’re concerned about the bodies of water that our hydroelectric plants allow for homes and recreation, or any other at-risk benefits of these plants, please join us.”

According to Oehler, FERC has so far received a wide range of comments on the relicensing including from some organizations who do not support relicensing the plants as they are and proposed alternatives such as fish passage installation or dam removal.

“Essentially, if FERC’s relicensing conditions are too expensive, one or more of our hydroelectric plants are at risk of removal,” Oehler said. “That’s why it’s critical for those who have an interest in the outcome of this process to remain engaged.”