FERC okays permit for small hydroelectric project near Las Vegas, Nevada

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Jan. 8 approved an Oct. 2 application from Las Vegas Wash Hydro LLC for a three-year preliminary permit proposing to study the feasibility of the Las Vegas Wash Hydroelectric Project, to be located on Las Vegas Wash in the city of Lake Las Vegas in Clark County, Nevada.

The proposed project would use the existing Las Vegas Wash and associated diversion and penstocks. The source of water through the project is waste streams from the metropolitan area of Las Vegas. Flows would return to the Las Vegas Wash at or near the existing point of return. The proposed project would be on privately owned lands and prescriptive easement right-of-ways. The existing Las Vegas Wash pipelines are owned by the City of Henderson, NV, and located on private lands by easement.

The project would consist of: an existing concrete diversion/inlet structurewith two gates; two existing 10,204-foot-long, 84-inch-diameter, side-by-side penstocks that pass beneath Lake Las Vegas; a new connection to the existing penstocks; a new powerhouse located adjacent to the existing outfall structure for the Las Vegas Wash, containing one 2.1-MW Francis turbine; a switchyard; and a 900-foot-long, 15-kV transmission line, which would interconnect into the utility distribution system owned by NV Energy.

The project would operate in a run-of-river mode using flows of the Las Vegas Wash consistent with historical operations. One of the two penstocks would be used for bypass flows. The estimated annual generation of the Las Vegas Wash Hydroelectric Project would be 16.5 gigawatt-hours.

Said the Jan. 8 approval: “During the course of the permit, the Commission expects that the permittee will carry out prefiling consultation and study development leading to the possible development of a license application. The prefiling process begins with preparation of a Notice of Intent (NOI) and Pre-Application Document (PAD) pursuant to sections 5.5 and 5.6 of the Commission’s regulations. The permittee must use the IntegratedLicensing Process unless the Commission grants a request to use an alternative process (Alternative or Traditional Licensing Process). Such a request must accompany the NOI and PAD and set forth specific information justifying the request.”

The applicant contact is: Ted Sorenson, P.E., Sorenson Engineering, 5203 S. 11th East, Idaho Falls, Idaho 83404; phone: (208) 522-8069.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.