The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Nov. 9 issued an Environmental Assessment on a December 2015 application from Brookfield White Pine Hydro LLC for a new license to continue to operate the Williams Hydroelectric Project.
The 13-MW project is located on the Kennebec River in Somerset County, Maine, approximately 67 river miles upstream of Augusta, Maine. The Williams Project consists of:
- a 894.7-foot-long, 46.0-foot-high dam;
- a 400-acre impoundment with a gross storage volume of 4,575 acre-feet and a useable storage volume of 2,065 acre-feet at a normal maximum elevation of 320 feet National Geodetic Vertical Datum 1929 (NGVD);
- a 40.5-foot-wide, 105.5-foot-long concrete powerhouse that is integral with the dam containing a 6-MW turbine-generating unit and a 7-MW turbine-generating unit for a total installed capacity of 13 MW;
- a tailrace that includes a 26-acre tailwater pool with a normal water surface elevation of 275 feet NGVD and a 6,000-foot-long, 150- to 175-foot-wide excavated main discharge channel; and
- a 200-foot-long generator lead and a 310-foot-long generator lead that connect the turbine-generator units to the regional grid.
The average annual generation of the Williams Project is 96,731 megawatt-hours (MWh). The power generated is sold into the Independent System Operator of New England market.
White Pine Hydro filed its license application in December 2015. On May 13, 2016, the commission issued a public notice accepting the application and soliciting motions to intervene and protests. FERC is now taking 30 days of public comment on the EA.