Overview of UC Region Powerplant Ownership & Operation

Upper Molina Powerplant
Upper Molina Powerplant located on east
bank of Cottonwood Creek, Colorado

There are 28 hydroelectric powerplants, including one under construction, at Reclamation projects in the Upper Colorado Region. Of the 28 powerplants, 20 are owned by Reclamation and eight are owned by private entities either under a lease of power privilege (Lease) issued by Reclamation or by a license from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The distinction between a Lease and a FERC license is that a FERC license may be issued at a Reclamation project where the development of power is not an authorized purpose of the Reclamation project. The FERC is an agency of the United States Department of Energy, and among other things, has jurisdiction over hydroelectric licensing in the United States except at those Reclamation projects where Congress has given authority to Reclamation.

Elephant Butte Dam and Powerplant
Elephant Butte Dam and Powerplant

Of the nine powerplants owned and operated by Reclamation, the Power Office’s Flaming Gorge Field Division operates and maintains the facilities associated with the Flaming Gorge and Fontenelle Powerplants; the Curecanti Field Division operates and maintains the facilities associated with the Blue Mesa, Morrow Point, Crystal, Upper Molina and Lower Molina Powerplants; and the Glen Canyon Field Division operates and maintains the facilities associated with the Glen Canyon Powerplant. The Elephant Butte Powerplant is operated and maintained by the Elephant Butte Field Division of the Albuquerque Area Office.


Upper Colorado Region Hydroelectric Powerplants Owned and Operated by Reclamation
Project Powerplant State River Initial Date In Service Number of Units Installed Capacity in kW
Collbran Lower Molina Colorado Pipeline Dec. 1962 1 4,860 kW
Collbran Upper Molina Colorado Pipeline Dec. 1962 1 8,640 kW
Colorado River Storage Project Blue Mesa Colorado Gunnison Sept. 1967 2 86,400 kW
Colorado River Storage Project Crystal Colorado Gunnison Aug. 1978 1 31,500 kW
Colorado River Storage Project Morrow Point Colorado Gunnison Dec. 1970 2 165,000 kW
Colorado River Storage Project Flaming Gorge Utah Green Nov. 1963 3 151,490 kW
Colorado River Storage Project Glen Canyon Arizona Colorado Sept. 1964 8 1,320,000 kW
Rio Grande Elephant Butte New Mexico Rio Grande Dec. 1940 3 27,900 kW
Seedskadee Fontenelle Wyoming Green May 1968 1 10,000 kW
Powerplants Owned by Reclamation - Operated and Maintained by Contract
Project Powerplant State River Initial Date In Service Number of Units Installed Capacity in kW
Central Utah Olmsted Utah Pipeline N/A 3 10,300 kW
Dolores McPhee Colorado Dolores N/A 1 1,283 kW
Dolores Towaoc Colorado Canal N/A 1 11,495 kW
Provo River Deer Creek Utah Provo N/A 2 4,950 kW
Strawberry Upper Strawberry Utah Canal N/A 2 3,500 kW
Strawberry Lower Strawberry Utah Canal N/A 1 250 kW
Strawberry Payson Utah Pipeline N/A 1 400 kW
Weber Basin Gateway Utah Canal N/A 2 4,500 kW
Weber Basin Wanship Utah Weber N/A 1 1,950 kW
Weber Basin Causey Utah Ogden N/A 2 2,200 kW
Lease of Power Privilege Powerplants
Project Powerplant State River Initial Date In Service Number of Units Installed Capacity in kW
Central Utah Jordanelle Utah Provo N/A 2 13,000 kW
Grand Valley Grand Valley Colorado Canal N/A 2 3,000 kW
Florida Lemon Colorado Florida N/A 1 120 kW
Mancos Jackson Gulch Colorado Canal N/A 1 260 kW
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Licensed Powerplants
Project Powerplant State River Initial Date In Service Number of Units Installed Capacity in kW
Colorado River Storage Project Navajo New Mexico San Juan N/A 2 30,000 kW
Middle Rio Grande El Vado New Mexico Rio Chama N/A 1 8,000 kW
Ogden River Pineview Utah Ogden N/A 1 1,800 kW
Pine River Vallecito Colorado Pine River N/A 3 5,844 kW
Weber River Echo Utah Weber N/A 3 4,500 kW
Last Updated: 3/20/19