By Lou Marzeles
The Klickitat PUD (KPUD) thinks water is just too lazy, just lying there. At best, it seems, you can make it run through a dam and generate electricity. But why not really make water go to work?
If KPUD can bring an ambitious new project to completion, water will work on a hugely prodigious scale, the likes of which have rarely been seen anywhere. And indications are that KPUD just could pull it off.
It has the colorless title John Day Pool Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Project. The name seems to match the scale of what it wants to do.
Essentially the project will pump water uphill into gigantic reservoirs when power is plentiful. Then, when power is somewhat depleted, the water can be released back downhill through turbines to generate more electricity. We’re talking a lot of water, capable of generating 1,200 megawatts of power. Read more
By Susan Lockhart
Northern Wyoming Daily News
Milt Geiger gets pretty excited when he talks about small hydropower projects in Wyoming, but he says his excitement is tempered by his economics background which makes him weigh the benefits and the cost.
Geiger, a University of Wyoming Extension Educator in the areas of energy economics and renewable energy, held a workshop this past week in Worland on small hydropower projects. Read more
By Christian Hill
Leaburg Dam operators have locked its only operating rollgate into an open position to avoid a potential failure after it malfunctioned last month, the Eugene Water & Electric Board’s engineering manager told utility commissioners Tuesday evening.
The Dec. 24 malfunction, which the utility did not previously disclose to the public, occurred the day after its No. 1 rollgate failed and slammed shut. Workers are expected to finish repairs to the No. 2 rollgate, which failed nearly three years ago, next week.
The engineering manager, Mel Damewood, told The Register-Guard after his presentation to commissioners that the No. 3 rollgate could still operate if needed. But officials decided that allowing it to continue operating could risk leaving the dam without any functional rollgates, which are cylindrical floodgates. Read more
By Associated Press and Tri-City Herald
The News Tribune
Dredging could start as soon as Monday at the downstream navigation lock approach at Ice Harbor Dam on the Snake River, after a ruling this week by a federal judge in Seattle.
The Army Corps of Engineers had awarded a $6.7 million contract to a Tacoma company in November to perform dredging to maintain the navigation channel in the Lower Snake River at the congressional mandated minimum of 250 feet wide by 14 feet deep. Read more
By Rich Landers
Kayakers are enjoying ritzy new facilities at Trailer Park Wave.
A $480,000 access to the Spokane River geared especially for nonmotorized paddlers, floaters and anglers has been completed by Avista Utilities downstream from Post Falls Dam.
The site includes parking for five vehicles, a vault toilet and a paved trail kayakers can use to carry their boats safely down to the river. Read more