Announcing the 2013 Outstanding Stewards of America's Waters
The annual Outstanding Stewards of America's Waters (OSAW) awards recognize deserving organizations in the hydropower industry for projects that exhibit exemplary operational, educational, historical, recreational or environmental enhancement and stewardship. Each year, NHA presents the OSAW awards at the NHA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. To learn more about the awards, visit www.hydro.org/awards.
Below we present the six winners of the OSAW awards for 2013.
|The 4.4-MW Jordan hydroelectric facility, installed in an intake tower at a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dam, won an NHA Outstanding Stewards of America's Waters award in the operational excellence category.|
Operational Excellence: Jordan Hydroelectric Project - Jordan Hydroelectric Limited Partnership
The Jordan Hydroelectric Project is the first hydropower facility of its kind in the country, using vertical turbines installed on an intake tower at a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers flood control dam.
The Jordan Dam Hydroelectric Project involves the installation of two conventional vertical Kaplan turbine-generators, each with a capacity of 2.2 MW under 57.5 feet of gross head and flow of 550 cubic feet per second, installed in a 180-ton steel enclosure (power module) that seals (like a headgate) to the upstream side of the tower's intake. Due to the adjustable nature of the design, power can be generated nearly 95% of the time without sacrificing any of the normal or flood control capabilities of the dam.
|Nesting bald eagles located within 2,600 feet of construction work being performed on the Holtwood facility were monitored during blasting and other activities. These studies provided new data on the tolerance of these eagles to construction activities. (See page 67 for details.)|
Operational Excellence: Innovative Dam Washer - Tacoma Power
Removing moss from the face of a dam can be a dangerous and costly process for hydropower plant operators. In response, Tacoma Power employees at the 462-MW Cowlitz River Hydroelectric Project designed and fabricated an automated, remote-controlled pressure washer to safely and effectively remove moss from the utility's seven dams, all of which impound water for hydroelectric facilities. Before the dam washer was invented, removing the moss by hand was a long and painstaking process. Their innovation has increased employee safety, resulted in faster and less costly moss removal, and has already been used to clean more than 500,000 square feet of concrete on three of its dams- an area larger than 10 football fields.
Public Education: Geocache Challenge: Take the D3 Tour - Chelan County Public Utility District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation
Visitors at Reclamation's Grand Coulee Dam, the Corps' Chief Joseph Dam and Chelan County PUD's Rocky Reach Dam on the Columbia River, all of which impound water for hydroelectric plants, had the opportunity to try a high-tech educational treasure hunt that involved using geocaching technology - finding hidden clues using GPS (global positioning system) devices or smart phones - to search for the hidden items and learn about clean, renewable hydropower along the way. Once they collected stamps from each of the three dams, the nearly 300 participants earned a unique geocaching embroidered patch as testament to their new-found appreciation for hydropower production and other essential facts about the role dams play in the Pacific Northwest.
|This dam washer, used to clean the face of Tacoma Power's seven dams, improves worker safety and decreases the time needed to remove moss from the dams.|
Recreational, Environmental & Historical Enhancement: Bald Eagle Management and Monitoring Plan - PPL Holtwood
To protect two pairs of nesting bald eagles located within 2,600 feet of construction at the Holtwood hydropower facility, PPL partnered with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Pennsylvania Game Commission to develop a site-specific adaptive management plan that includes seasonal construction restrictions, phased construction activities and monitoring studies at the nests during blasting. Results from these studies have produced new knowledge about the tolerance of bald eagles to construction activities. This information will assist regulators, consultants and licensees in understanding how to protect the iconic symbol of the U.S. and how to develop solutions to avoid disturbing eagles during construction.
|This patch was created as an award for successful participants in the three-dam Geocache Challenge organized by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Chelan County Public Utility District and the Bureau of Reclamation.|
Recreational, Environmental & Historical Enhancement: Upper Falls Aesthetic Spill Project - Avista
Avista successfully restored two channels downstream of its Upper Falls Development on the Spokane River to look much the way they did long ago, before the channels were altered to divert water to numerous flour and lumber mills, as well as for hydropower generation. The channel restoration, using weirs shaped and colored to look like the bedrock throughout the river, spread water more evenly throughout the two channels and has now functioned successfully through an entire spill season. Combined, they produce an aesthetically pleasing flow over the falls that viewers can enjoy throughout the year.
|The river below Avista's Upper Falls Development now more closely mimics the natural condition of the river, thanks to the installation of weirs shaped and colored to look like bedrock.|
Recreational, Environmental & Historical Enhancement: Great Gorge Railway Trail Stone Stairway - New York Power Authority
NYPA's Great Gorge Railway Trail Stone Stairway is a new recreational feature built as part of the Niagara Power Project relicensing that connects the existing hiking trails at the top and bottom of the Niagara Gorge to form a hiking loop, thereby enhancing the gorge's appeal to everyday users. The gorge is a unique and spectacular scenic area but is greatly underused by the tourist public due to challenges from the steep, rugged terrain and a lack of easy, family-friendly access. To deal with the complex underlying geology and steep slope while maintaining the natural character of the gorge setting, NYPA partnered with New York State Parks to install a dry-laid stone stairway set into the surface contours of the slope. The result is a beautiful, unobtrusive, and easy-to-hike stairway and path.
For more information on these and previous OSAW winners, visit www.hydro.org/awards.
|A dry-laid stone stairway connects existing hiking trails at the top and bottom of the Niagara Gorge and blends well with the environment through the use of natural materials.|
About the National Hydropower Association
NHA is the unified voice of the U.S. hydropower industry both in Washington, D.C., and across the country. Through advocacy, policy, communications and education initiatives, NHA works every day to maximize the role that available, affordable, reliable and sustainable hydropower plays in the U.S. electricity sector.
NHA accomplishes its policy work and outreach through the following standing committees and councils:
- Hydraulic Power Committee: Provides a forum for hydropower owners and operators, as well as equipment and service providers for hydroelectric facilities, to exchange information and share ideas relating to the technical best practices on operations and aspects of hydropower projects maintenance, dam safety and security, and worker safety;
- Legislative Affairs Committee: Develops recommendations for and positions on legislation before Congress;
- Public Affairs Committee: Directs NHA's communication strategies, media outreach and education efforts;
- Regulatory Affairs Committee: Develops hydropower policy recommendations and interprets regulatory changes for NHA's members;
- Research and Development Committee: Recommends strategies to promote technological and other advancements and innovations to strengthen and grow the hydropower industry's contribution to our clean energy future;
- CEO Council: Serves as a forum to bring hydropower executives together to share information about industry challenges and problems and provide strategic counsel to NHA board;
- Ocean, Tidal and New Technologies Council: Assists in the development of policies to support the growth of new marine and hydrokinetic technologies;
- Pumped Storage Development Council: Assists in the development of policies to support growth in the pumped storage sector; and
- Small Hydropower Council: Assists in the development of policies to support growth in the small hydro sector, with a particular emphasis on conventional hydro projects, development at non-powered dams, irrigation and conduit power.
NHA's Board of Directors serves as the association's policy board and uses recommendations from the standing committees on which to base its decisions. Representatives from NHA member organizations across the country serve on the board and these committees and councils, providing expertise and recommendations to ensure that NHA's initiatives serve the interests of the hydropower industry.
Benefits of membership
There are a number of services NHA offers its members. Most importantly, the association unites the collective voice of the industry on matters of national regulatory and legislative policy.
- Government Affairs: Our government affairs program promotes hydropower as a vital energy option - a clean and important renewable technology. Our legislative and regulatory affairs programs champion hydropower before Congress and the federal agencies. NHA works to ensure hydro's competitiveness in the new electric marketplace by reducing unnecessary costs and expanding market opportunities. Areas of focus include energy policy, tax incentives, renewable energy standards, regulatory process improvements and investments in new technology.
- Communications: Our communications program spreads the word about the value of hydropower. By building strong relationships with local, national and trade news media, the hydropower industry can educate federal and state policy makers and the public at large about the need to protect and expand this crucial electricity source. NHA produces reports and materials industry members can use within their companies, building stronger relationships with their communities.
- Education: Our education program offers national, regional and sector-specific conferences that put you in touch with industry leaders, policy makers and regulators, as well as with potential new customers. These forums focus on the most critical issues facing the industry, provide new and creative solutions to problems you face every day, and give you access to a wealth of information by connecting you to those who know - within the industry and government.
- Technology and Research and Development: Our technology and R&D program promotes increased operational efficiencies and enhanced environmental mitigation effects through the development of the next generation of hydroelectric equipment. Its analysis of the economic, social and environmental benefits that hydropower brings to the U.S. economy helps promote effective public policy.
- Publications: NHA publications provide you with everything you need to know in one bi-weekly electronic communication - the NHA Today newsletter - offering the latest information on regulatory and legislative policy, regional concerns and issues on the horizon. This publication provides a steady stream of news and helps you connect to experts in the industry. In addition, our special reports, website and issue briefs are resources at your disposal for you to add to your company's tools to educate your local community and customers about the tremendous benefits of hydropower.
What Does NHA Membership Offer You?
- Access to information;
- Access to Congress;
- Access to FERC and federal agencies;
- Access to leaders and colleagues within the industry;
- Access to potential customers and clients; and
- Opportunities to increase your competitive edge ...
... all while supporting and building new opportunities for the best energy technology in the world - hydropower!
To learn more about the benefits and to inquire about joining, contact Diane Lear at email@example.com.
NHA's 2013-2014 Leadership
NHA is pleased to announce its new leadership for the upcoming year.
- Marc Gerken, American Municipal Power, President
- Jane Cirricione, Northern California Power Agency, Vice President
- Eric Van Duren, Mead & Hunt, Treasurer
- Bill Bunker, Pacific Gas & Electric, Secretary
- David Moller, Pacific Gas & Electric, Immediate Past President
- Linda Church Ciocci, Executive Director
Board of Directors
- Wayne Dyok, Alaska Energy Authority
- Kevin Frank, Voith Hydro
- Suzanne Grassell, Chelan County Public Utility District
- Kirby Gilbert, MWH
- Carol Goolsby, Duke Energy
- Lisa Grow, Idaho Power
- Jeanne Hilsinger, Mavel
- John McCormick, Tennessee Valley Authority
- Rick Miller, HDR (Past President)
- Andrew Munro, Grant County Public Utility District (Past President)
- Cherise Oram, Stoel Rives LLP
- Chuck Sensiba, Van Ness Feldman
- R.M. Singletary, Santee Cooper
- Mark Stover, Hydro Green Energy
- John Suloway, New York Power Authority
- Steve Wenke, Avista
- James Hancock, Balch & Bingham LLP (General Counsel)
- Tom Heller, Missouri River Energy Services
- Herbie Johnson, Southern Company
Outgoing officers and members of the board
NHA would like to thank those members of the board and executive committee who will vacate their positions with the start of the new board term at the NHA Annual Conference. Their years of service and unwavering commitment to the association have been invaluable in furthering hydropower as America's premiere renewable energy resource.
- David Moller, Pacific Gas & Electric, Outgoing President
- Cherise Oram, Stoel Rives LLP, Outgoing Vice President
- Suzanne Grassell, Chelan County PUD, Outgoing Secretary
- John Barnes, Exelon, Outgoing Board Member
- John Claybrook, Alstom, Outgoing Board Member