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News Release: October 22, 2003 Print this page
Docket Numbers: P-2000-036, EL03-224-000, EL03-225-000

COLLABORATION CREDITED WITH SWIFT RELICENSING SUCCESS OF MASSIVE ST. LAWRENCE-FDR HYDRO PROJECT ON CANADIAN BORDER IN NORTHERN NEW YORK

Stressing the value of intense collaboration among interested parties, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today relicensed one of the largest hydro projects under its jurisdiction.

The 912-MW St. Lawrence-FDR project, which is part of an international hydroelectric facility that spans the U.S-Canadian border, took just two years to license after the application was filed with the Commission.

“The fact that such a large, complex project could be relicensed prior to the expiration of the existing license is a statement of the parties’ commitment to resolving difficult issues,” said J. Mark Robinson, Director of the Commission’s Office of Energy Projects.

The New York Power Authority owns and operates the project, which not only provides power but also regulates the water levels in Lake Ontario and provides water releases for navigation levels in Montreal. The project is located on the St. Lawrence River near Massena, New York.

The massive undertaking involved constructive, early discussions among local, state, federal and Canadian officials, conservation groups, and Native Americans, among others. The issues associated with the project were far-ranging and required diligence and compromise by all parties, Robinson stressed.

As part of the license, the Commission approved a settlement agreement which adopts numerous environmental mitigation measures to protect fisheries, cultural resources and wildlife, among other things. The Commission emphasized its support of settlement agreements.

Among other things, the license provides for the following:

  • establishment of a $24 million fund for fish enhancement and mitigation to be used for research, construction and operation of projects benefiting fisheries in the Lake Ontario/St. Lawrence River basin;
  • construction of a fish ladder to assist the upstream passage of American eel;
  • allocation of power from the project to the states of Massachusetts, Vermont, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Ohio;
  • development of various habitat improvement projects within the project boundary;
  • rehabilitation and expansion of existing recreational facilities, including additional trails, camping facilities and boat launches; and
  • a shoreline management plan to effectively maintain shoreline resources in the project’s boundary.

The license issued today is for a term of 50 years.

R-03-39
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Updated: June 28, 2010