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Relicensing Projects on the Connecticut River, New Hampshire and Vermont

Case Studies

Client: Great River Hydro, LLC

Project Highlights: Normandeau served as the lead relicensing consultant for three different projects that encompassed over 120 river miles.

Services Provided:

  • Water quality studies
  • Rare species surveys
  • Study plan development
  • FERC consulting
  • Fish habitat investigation
  • Hydroacoustics
  • Floodplain and wetland habitat evaluations
  • Instream flow studies

Normandeau served as the lead relicensing consultant supporting Great River Hydro, LLC (formerly TransCanada Hydro Northeast, Inc.) in its relicensing efforts for the Wilder (FERC No. 1892), Bellows Falls (FERC No. 1855), and Vernon (FERC No. 1904) projects, with licenses that expired in 2019. These projects encompassed over 120 river miles bordering two states and have a combined generating capacity of approximately 107 MW. Great River Hydro utilized the Integrated Licensing Process (ILP) to relicense these projects. Normandeau developed Notices of Intent and Preliminary Application Documents (PADs) for each project. Normandeau scientists also conducted several comprehensive pre-PAD studies to collect baseline water quality data, and to inventory rare, threatened, and endangered species. The Normandeau team supported Great River Hydro through the FERC scoping, consultation, and study plan phases and developed 33 ILP study plans—all of which were approved by stakeholders and FERC.

The team completed the full set of relicensing studies over a period of two study years. These included fish habitat and spawning investigations; passage route selection using radiotelemetry; turbine survival studies; and hydroacoustics for fish behavior investigations of species including American Eel, American Shad, and Sea Lamprey along with numerous resident species. Terrestrial studies included floodplain and wetland habitat evaluations, and rare species surveys for plants, wildlife, beetles, dragonflies, amphibians, and federally endangered freshwater mussels. Water quality, instream flow, and aquatic habitat studies were conducted as were erosion, recreation, and cultural resources investigations over the 120 miles of project area.

We continue to support Great River Hydro on strategic planning, fisheries and endangered species consultation, and post-application Environmental Assessment.

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