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    FERC receives application for Mineville pumped storage

    Developer Moriah Hydro Corp. filed a draft hydropower license application Oct. 4, seeking Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval of the 260-MW Mineville pumped-storage project, to be located completely underground in an abandoned mine complex in New York.

    Moriah Hydro proposes the Mine-ville project be constructed at the town of Moriah, N.Y., within four interconnected mines, which had been developed by Republic Steel Corp. and its predecessors. The mines extend from a surface elevation of 1,263 feet above mean sea level downward 4,000 feet.

    The project will use no stream or other body of water nor utilize any dam or spillway. The upper reservoir is to be located in the mine between 495 and 1,095 feet MSL, while the lower reservoir would be between -1,075 and -1,555 feet MSL.

    Mineville's underground powerhouse is to contain 20 pump-turbine power trains of five reversible pump-turbines in each, totaling 260 MW.

    Work progresses on Lewiston project modernizations

    Upgrades to the first of 12 pump-turbines at the Niagara Hydroelectric Power Plant's 240-MW Lewiston Pump-Generation Plant were completed in early October.

    The upgrades are part of the New York Power Authority's 10-year, US$460 million Life Extension and Modernization program. This program will not only see each of the pumped-storage project's turbine units upgraded, but also its generator step-up transformers replaced, which date to 1961.

    NYPA will overhaul one turbine unit every eight to nine months, leaving the other 11 units available for power production. Work on the next unit was to begin later in October.

    Reclamation awards contract for Red Bluff Diversion Dam removal

    The U.S. Department of Interior's Bureau of Reclamation has awarded a US$3.28 million contract to E.C. Smith Inc. to decommission the Red Bluff Diversion Dam on California's Sacramento River.

    E.C Smith will demolish the dam's interim pumping facility, research and temporary pumping plants, and settling basin and drum screens; decommission the dam and two concrete fish ladders; remove steel sheet piles; fabricate stoplogs and a lifting beam for a siphon outlet; and construct a concrete cutoff wall to separate the stilling basin from the river.

    FERC issues Alaska hydro license, exempts projects in Colorado, California

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission licensing action in August 2013 included:

    - Issuing a license to Copper Valley Electric Association Inc. for the 6.5-MW Allison Creek project proposed for Allison Creek at Port Valdez, Alaska;

    - Issuing a (maximum 5 MW) small hydro exemption to Catamount Metropolitan District for 695-kW Catamount to be built at Lake Catamount Dam on the Yampa River in Colorado;

    - Issuing a conduit exemption to Carlsbad Municipal Water District for the 135-kW Pressure Control Facility project on Maerkle Reservoir in San Diego, Calif.; and

    - Receiving license applications from Snohomish County Public Utility District No. 1 for the 6-MW Calligan Creek project on Calligan Creek and 6-MW Hancock Creek on Hancock Creek.

    The update is at www.ferc.gov/legal/staff-reports/2013/aug-energy-infrastructure.pdf.

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