Turning Water into Power: Hydropower Projects Under Review
Hydropower generation is prevalent in the West, where rapidly flowing river systems have been tapped for generations to produce electricity. Hydropower is a clean, steady and reliable energy source, but the damming of rivers has exacted a toll on the environment, affecting, among other things, the migration of fish to vestigial spawning grounds. Many of those projects are due to be relicensed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. This issue of Western Waterexamines the complicated world of FERC relicensing and the process of evaluating hydropower projects licensed decades ago in light of today’s societal values and the need to balance all the uses of the natural resource.