Renewable Power Generation for Water Transmission

Project ID: 7014
Principal Investigator: Mitchell Haws
Research Topic: Improved Power Generation
Funded Fiscal Years: 2011
Keywords: None

Research Question

Are there opportunities to use Reclamation project land and right-of-way for the installation of solar technologies?

Can we better use project lands and improve power generation capabilities for water transmission?

Can strategically located solar technology be placed on the canal system right-of-way or cover the canals?

Need and Benefit

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Park Service (NPS) have been looking at the amount of carbon emission coming from the Navajo Power Generation Station (NGS) in Arizona. Because of the visible emissions coming from NGS, the NPS, along with the EPA and private environmental groups, would like NGS to install approximately $1 billion emission scrubbers or even shut down NGS. If these organizations are successful at requiring the additional standards or reducing power generation coming from NGS, there will be a significant economic impact to Reclamation, along with many of Reclamation's partners. Thus, in order to thwart these concerns, Reclamation should begin research to explore alternatives for replacement power supplies. The current administration has placed a high importance on renewable power supplies; therefore, it only seems prudent for Reclamation to research this subject.

This research will:

* Produce clean energy alternatives for powering pumping stations

* Provide potential replacement power for losses at NGS

* Minimize evaporation from open canals

* Provide renewable energy credit

* Develop a baseline for future estimation and identifying challenges that need to be overcome for large-scale project

* Contribute on a multi-level scale to the green initiative

* Fulfill future system power requirements

* Provide additional power for the future

Contributing Partners

Contact the Principal Investigator for information about partners.

Research Products

Not Reviewed

The following documents were not reviewed. Statements made in these documents are those of the authors. The findings have not been verified.

Renewable Power Generation for Water Transmission (interim, PDF, 6.5MB)
By Mitchell Haws
Report completed on May 30, 2014

This report summarizes the work that has been completed thus far for identifying and developing renewable energy on the Central Arizona Project (CAP) canal right-of-way lands for transmission of water. A GIS suitability analysis was performed identifying specific locations where renewable power could be developed. And a site visit was conducted by National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) and Reclamation to verify the finding of the GIS work. Estimates of potential generation were developed.

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Last Updated: 6/22/20