20 October 2008 — Puget Sound Energy received a new, 50-year federal operating license for the utility’s largest hydropower facility, the 190-MW Baker River Hydroelectric Project in Northwest Washington state.
PSE’s Baker project consists of two concrete dams in Washington’s North Cascades mountains: 85-MW Lower Baker Dam, built in 1925, and 105-MW Upper Baker Dam, completed in 1959.
The utility estimates it will spend about $360 million to meet the new license provisions and operate the Baker facility. More than half of those costs relate to fish-enhancement measures.
The new license from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission results from years of collaborative studies and negotiated agreements between PSE and a group of 23 other parties, including governmental entities, Indian tribes, fisheries interests and environmental organizations.
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