News Release Archive

Draft Environmental Assessment Released for Proposed Third Hydroelectric Generating Unit at Black Canyon Dam

Media Contact: Kelly Bridges, (208) 378-5101, 02/12/2016 14:03
Richard Jackson

For Release: February 12, 2016

EMMETT, Idaho – The Bureau of Reclamation is seeking comments on the revised Draft Environmental Assessment to help identify issues and concerns associated with the proposed construction of a third hydroelectric generating unit at Black Canyon Diversion Dam on the Payette River near Emmett, Idaho.

In October 2011, Reclamation completed an Environmental Assessment and signed a Finding of No Significant Impact. To incorporate new environmental information, Reclamation has prepared a revised Draft Environmental Assessment that will supersede the 2011 Environmental Assessment and Finding of Significant Impact.

The revised Draft Environmental Assessment analyzes a proposal to construct a 12.5 megawatt hydroelectric generating unit. The proposed hydroelectric unit would generate 105 million kilowatt-hours per year, enough to power approximately 9,500 homes. The power produced would be integrated into the power grid and serve 10 irrigation districts in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon as well as the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes.

The Draft Environmental Assessment analyzes potential environmental impacts of two alternatives, including a preferred alternative:

Alternative A – No Action – Under the No Action alternative, a third hydroelectric generating unit or associated facilities would not be constructed.

Alternative B – Proposed Action – Under Alternative B, Reclamation would construct a 12.5 MW third hydroelectric generating unit at Black Canyon Diversion Dam.

You may download the Draft Environmental Assessment at: www.usbr.gov/pn/programs/blackcanyondam/.

Please send your written comments no later than March 14, 2016, to Richard Jackson, Natural Resource Specialist, Bureau of Reclamation, Snake River Area Office, 230 Collins Road, Boise, ID 83702 or by email at bcdd-comments@usbr.gov. You may also contact him at (208) 383-2285 for additional information or to obtain a hard copy of the Draft Environmental Assessment.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation's second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at https://www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

Relevant Link:

http://www.usbr.gov/pn/programs/blackcanyondam/