Energy policy — hydroelectric: Public Scoping Begins on Proposed Hydropower Project at Ridgway Dam

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Here’s the release from Reclamation (Steve McCall/Justyn Hock):

Reclamation announced today that it will hold a public scoping meeting to provide information and answer questions about a proposed hydropower project at Ridgway Dam in Ouray County, Colo. The project, proposed by the Tri-County Water Conservancy District, would generate electricity using the existing water releases from Ridgway Dam throughout the year.

Ridgway Dam is a feature of the Dallas Creek Project, which is a federal Reclamation project designed to provide irrigation and drinking water to Montrose, Delta, and Ouray counties in western Colorado.

The public meeting will be on April 26, 2011 at 5:30 p.m. at the 4H Event Center located at 22739 Highway 550 in Ridgway.

Reclamation is also seeking comments for preparation of a draft environmental assessment on the proposed project. Comments can include: questions or concerns you have with the proposal; significant issues to be addressed; and any information or data that could help in review of the proposal. Comments can be provided at the meeting or submitted by May 27, 2011 by email or mail to Steve McCall at or Bureau of Reclamation, 2764 Compass Drive, Suite 106, Grand Junction, CO 81506.

Meanwhile Orchard City is weighing their options with low head hydroelectric generation. Here’s a report from Hank Lohmeyer writing for the Delta County Independent. From the article:

Town administrator David Varley reported during a trustee work session last week that an engineer would begin assessing the project sometime soon…There is a lot of hope for low-head hydro generating projects now because of government grant money available for them.

More hydroelectric coverage here and here. More Uncompahgre River watershed coverage here and here.

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