Saluda Hydro Relicensing


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Saluda Hydro Project Factoid:

Only two bulldozers were used in the construction of the original dam, completed in 1930.


Process Overview

Relicensing in General

Federal Seal

Most non-Federal hydroelectric projects in the United States are operated under licenses issued by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The Federal Power Act (FPA) gives FERC the exclusive authority to issue licenses to construct, operate, and maintain certain non-Federal hydropower projects. The relicensing process addresses not only the generation of electricity, but also the natural resources that are present and which may be affected - both positively and negatively - by a project's operation. FERC is required by federal law to consider both power and non-power issues in relicensing hydroelectric facilities.

The relicensing process involves consulting with resource agencies and the public regarding studies and study results. The licensee compiles the study results in a draft license application that is then distributed for public review. The licensee receives comments and develops a final license application for filing with FERC. Once FERC has the license application, the agency reviews the application to make sure all requirements and regulations have been met and then begins the public scoping process pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). The scoping process helps identify issues and reasonable alternatives as well as determines if additional studies or other information are needed.

Project Facts

BoatingThe current license for the Saluda Hydro Project is set to expire on August 31, 2010. According to FERC regulations, the licensee must file its application for a new license two years before the current license expires, or by August 31, 2008. Officially, the relicensing process will begin when the licensee files a "Notice of Intent" with FERC in 2005.

Successfully completing the relicensing process will involve identifying and resolving project issues in consultation with Federal and State resource agencies, local and national non-governmental organizations (NGOs), home and boat owner associations, and individuals who have an interest in the Saluda Hydro Project.

SCE&G (previous licensee) solicited input on project-related concerns through public workshops that were held in October 2004 (click here to see a summary of the workshops).

Several key factors will lead to successful completion of the relicensing process:

  • Communication among the licensee and stakeholders
  • Public involvement in the process
  • Commitment among the licensee and stakeholders to issue resolution

> > More Project Facts


Process Outline

Click on the image above to launch an interactive outline of the relicensing process.



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