Public review is now under way for a proposed hydroelectric plant for the North Fork Dam at Lake Clementine in the Auburn State Recreation Area.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued a preliminary permit for further study of a plant to generate electricity for an estimated 6,800 homes annually, with final application from the developer expected in March 2016.
Developer Lake Clementine Hydro LLC, a partnership of Canadian-based Kruger Energy and Delaware-based America Renewables, seeks a long-term lease of federal lands for a power plant using the American River and the North Fork Dam built in 1939. The proposal is to retrofit the existing dam as a renewable energy source using natural “run-of-river” flows.
As the proposal winds its way through the review and approval process, more forums and community meetings are expected. Comments are currently being offered on the developer’s proposed list of needed studies.
Studies are expected to examine the visual impacts of a new powerhouse, turbine towers and transmission lines in the popular canyon, effects on wildlife and plants, and potential changes to water flows. Other potential study areas are the impacts of construction roads from the confluence to the North Fork Dam and whether the project would negatively affect enjoyment and access to hiking trails, boating and picnicking.
A Revised Study Plan is expected to be submitted to FERC by the developer in the next six months.
• Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, www.ferc.gov, FERC docket number P-13432 in the eLibrary section. To register for email alerts: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filings/esubscriptions.asp.
• Developer Lake Clementine Hydro LLC, http://lakeclementinehydro.com/wp-
• Protect American River Canyon’s campaign for state Wild & Scenic status of the area and project resources, http://www.parc-auburn.org/clem_hydro.html
• Auburn Public Library, 350 Nevada St., key documents available for public review.
• Comment letter on proposed study areas from the Gold Fields District of the Department of Parks and Recreation, Letter to Lake Clementine Hydro LLC - Comments on Study Plans - 6-27-14.pdf