FERC and Hydroelectric Licensing

Spartanburg Water is seeking consideration from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for hydroelectric licensing. The following links detail that process, as well as provide you with useful information about Spartanburg Water, hydroelectric power and FERC.

Today, as fossil fuel costs soar and protection of the environment becomes more important than ever, there is a greater emphasis on green energy produced where possible with renewable resources. In June of 2010, the Spartanburg Water Commission approved a resolution authorizing management and staff to explore the feasibility of sustainable, renewable energy resources, including hydroelectric, solar, and biomass applications. The following mission statement was developed for the renewable energy program:

“Spartanburg Water identifies innovative and creative ways to utilize renewable energy resources in response to the changing economic and environmental conditions faced by Spartanburg Water and its community. Renewable energy will ensure that Spartanburg Water is accountable for achieving our mission and the responsible use of the resources (water, personnel, environment and infrastructure) available to us in a reliable manner.”

Since that time, Spartanburg Water has filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Applications for Preliminary Permits, which gave Spartanburg Water the right to conduct studies and investigate the feasibility of further developing its hydropower capabilities.

Here are a few facts about hydroelectric power:

  • Spartanburg Water retains control over Lake Bowen, Lake Blalock, and Municipal Reservoir #1.
  • Hydropower generation in no way impacts Spartanburg Water’s ability to meet the drinking water needs of the community.
  • Recreation on the lakes is not impacted.
  • Downstream releases are not changed because of hydropower production.
  • Lakefront property owners see no change in lake levels due to hydropower

Please review the following links for more information on hydroelectric power and FERC.

Citizens Guide to Hydroelectric Licensing

For more information, and to view documentation related to each of Spartanburg Water's FERC licensing projects, visit the following link:

http://elibrary.ferc.gov/idmws/docket_search.asp

When using the search term in the above link from the FERC website (see screenshot below for an example), enter the appropriate project number for the following projects:

  • P-14361 (Lake Bowen)
  • P-14338 (Lake Blalock)
  • P-14215 (Fingerville)