Wisconsin PSC accepts registration for revived hydro facility in Minnesota

The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin, in an order issued on June 4, accepted for registration into the state’s renewable energy program a revived hydro facility at Sartell, Minnesota.

“On May 14, 2015, Dairyland Power Cooperative (applicant) requested that the Commission certify Sartell Hydro as a renewable facility,” said the commission order. “This 9.5 megawatt (MW) hydroelectric generating facility consists of 11 turbines placed in service between December 2014 and March 2015, and is owned and operated by Eagle Creek Renewable Energy. The Sartell Hydro facility has met the Commission’s criteria for certification as a renewable facility specified in Wis. Admin. Code §§ PSC 118.03(1) and 118.05 because: 1) electricity is generated using a renewable resource; 2) the applicant has completed the Renewable Facility Registration Report, Form 6025; and 3) the applicant has demonstrated that the facility’s output is physically metered.”

AIM Development (USA) LLC and Eagle Creek Sartell Hydro LLC had applied in July 2014 at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for a license transfer. The license covers the Sartell Project, with the license held by AIM and to be transferred to Eagle Creek. The potential power produced by the Sartell Project is not currently being consumed due to a fire and explosion that destroyed the adjacent paper mill in 2012.

This is a run-of-river hydroelectric dam with a nameplate capacity of about 9.5 MW that was originally constructed in 1905 and is located on the Upper Mississippi River near Sartell, Minn. Currently, the project is under a 40-year license that was issued in March 1985. The project has been in various hands since then.

Dairyland’s May 14 application references the paper mill and the fact that it was shut by a May 2012 explosion, and also the recent effort to revive the shut hydro turbines at this site.

Eagle Creek Sartell Hydro is part of Eagle Creek Renewable Energy, which is part of a corporate family, including North American Hydro, that owns and operates hydroelectric facilities in states like Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota.

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.