Colorado authority lends $1.45 million for 240-kW Cortez

The Colorado Water Resources and Power Development Authority has approved a $1.45 million loan to the city of Cortez for the 240-kW Cortez Micro Hydroelectric Project.

The 20-year loan has an interest rate of 2 percent.

The Colorado city plans to install one 240-kW hydropower unit on its water conveyance system in Montezuma County. The city anticipates it would generate an average of 1,400 megawatt-hours annually, which would be sold to a utility.

Cortez has filed for a conduit exemption from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for the project (No. 13322). FERC issued notice of the application Feb. 6, calling for comments by March 23.

Colorado awards $150,000 in grants for 10 small hydros

The water and power authority also awarded matching grants totaling $150,000 for evaluation and development of 10 small hydropower projects. It had invited grant applications for feasibility studies, permitting activities, or final design of potential hydropower projects. (HNN 8/27/08)

The authority's board approved applications, seeking $15,000 each, in late January. Grant recipients, who must provide matching funds, are: cities of Aspen, Fort Collins, Georgetown, Idaho Springs, and Thornton; Colorado River Water Conservation District; Parker Water and Sanitation District; San Luis Valley Irrigation District; Summit County; and Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District.

Aspen plans to use grant funds for preliminary engineering and licensing costs of three hydropower developments that could be installed on the city's municipal water supply system.

Colorado River Water Conservation District plans to use grant funds to update a study of a project proposed for Wolford Mountain Reservoir. The dam outlet of the water supply reservoir was designed to accommodate the addition of a hydropower plant.

Fort Collins Utilities plans to use grant funds for a feasibility study of installing a small turbine on a conduit to the city's water treatment plant. The city said the $1.5 million project could be completed in June 2011.

Georgetown plans to fund a feasibility study of adding a hydropower generating system during an upgrade of its water treatment plant.

Idaho Springs plans to use the grant funds for a feasibility study of installing a small hydropower system at its treatment plant and to evaluate other potential hydropower application sites.

Parker Water and Sanitation District plans to fund a feasibility study of adding a 157- to 260-kW hydropower project to the Rueter-Hess Dam outlet pipeline to a future water treatment plant.

San Luis Valley Irrigation District plans to use its grant funds to study adding hydropower to offset part of the cost of rehabilitating its Rio Grande Reservoir and to reduce use of fossil fuel to generate electricity.

Summit County plans to use grant funds to study feasibility of adding hydropower, to offset pumping costs, during expansion of Old Dillon Reservoir to serve water needs of Summit County, Dillon, and Silverthorne.

Thornton plans to use the grant funds for a feasibility study of adding an 83- to 312-kW hydropower generator to Burlington Ditch, which diverts water to South Tani Reservoir.

Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District plans to use its grant funds for a feasibility study of placing a hydropower unit next to a valve house downstream of Taylor Park Dam and selling power to Gunnison County Electric Association.

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