Maine Deal to Remove Dams, Maintain Power Generation, Rescue Endangered Salmon
PPL Corporation in Allentown, Pennsylvania, announced October 6 that it has reached an agreement with a coalition of federal and state government agencies, the Penobscot Indian Nation, and private groups to sell three of its hydroelectric dams in Maine. The coalition has a five-year option to buy the three facilities for $25 million, and plans to remove two of the dams and bypass the third to restore runs of endangered Atlantic salmon and other migratory fishes to the Penobscot River. The new runs will open up millions of acres of spawning grounds for the salmon in central Maine. The three projects represent 18 megawatts (MW) of hydroelectric generating capability.
PPL will continue to own about 27 MW of hydroelectric capacity on the Penobscot River and its tributaries in Maine, and the agreement will allow PPL to boost energy output at its remaining projects. The private groups have also agreed to drop opposition to PPL's federal relicensing efforts for its remaining dams. For more information, see PPL's October 6 press release.
Source: October 8 issue of EERE Network News.
For more in-depth treatment, read the October 7 article by Mary Wiltenburg in the Christian Science Monitor titled, "Historic Maine bargain opens way for return of Atlantic salmon runs".