U.S. Awards Rural Energy Funds to Hydro Projects in Four States

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Columbia River Hydroelectric Dam

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded more than $8 million to hydroelectric power plant projects in Connecticut, Oregon, Utah, and Vermont under the Rural Energy for America Program.

“The Obama administration is assisting small businesses, including farmers and ranchers, as they work to reduce their energy costs,” Rural Development Deputy Undersecretary Doug O’Brien said of the awards, which went to numerous technologies. “When energy costs are reduced, American rural businesses become more competitive, allowing them to expand and create jobs.”

More details on these four projects:

$7.2 Million Granted to Oregon Hydro Project

This is the largest project by far awarded money, by far, and received $7.2 million of the $8 million awarded to all the projects. The money went to EBD Hydro LLC, which is constructing a 5-MW (5,000-kW), 45-mile project that translates into a capital cost of $1.44 per watt (if this is how much the project actually costs).

This project consists of a single turbine-powered generator that is expected to generate 18.126 GWH of electricity per year. It will utilize irrigated water from the Deschutes and Crooked rivers.

$500,000 Granted to Utah Project

The USDA awarded $500,000 to BMB Enterprises Inc to construct a 650-kW (0.625-MW) Six-Mile Creek hydroelectric power plant.

BMB actually received a license to carry out this project in 1987, but it was delayed until now because of interconnection agreements, rights of way, property acquisition and permit issues.

This project consists of 4 hydroelectric turbines, a diversion structure, and transmission lines (not all power plant projects include transmission lines, sometimes they are constructed separately).

$275,000 Granted to Putnam Greenpower’s Connecticut Project

Putnam Greenpower LLC received a $275,000 grant to fund its 875-kW (0.875-MW) dual-turbine Cargill Falls project in Quinebaug River, Putnam, Connecticut. This project is expected to generate 2.523 GWh annually.

$49,325 Granted to Vermont Candelora Hydroelectric Project

Green Mountain Environmental Consulting project was awarded $49,325 to construct a 65-kw (0.065-MW) hydroelectric power plant on Roaring Branch Brook in Bennington, Vermont.

h/t Renewable Energy World | Photo Credit: Ron Schott

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Nicholas Brown

Has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, and geography. His website is: Kompulsa.com.

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