Dam

Dam

The West Springfield Project is located in the Connecticut River Basin. The Connecticut River is the largest river in the New England states. It extends about 400 miles from its origin in Fourth Connecticut Lake, New Hampshire, at an elevation of 2,625 feet, to Saybrook, Connecticut, where it empties into Long Island Sound. The tidal portion of the river extends from Long Island Sound to a point 60 miles upstream (Enfield Rapids).

Project Name West Springfield
LIHI Certificate Number 19
LIHI Effective and
Expiration Dates
August 29, 2015
August 29, 2020
Owner A & D Hydro, Inc.
State Massachusetts
Location Located on the Westfield River in West Springfield and Agawam, Massachusetts.
Installed Capacity 1,400 kW
Average Annual Generation 5.5 GWh
Facility Type Run-of-river
FERC No. 2608

The Connecticut River is a highly developed resource with many projects in the smaller tributaries of northern Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire. At present, there are 109 existing hydroelectric developments in the Connecticut River Basin. Because of their upstream location and remoteness, however, these projects have no effect on the West Springfield Project.

The Westfield River is a major tributary of the Connecticut River. The Westfield and Connecticut Rivers confluence is about 7 miles north of the Massachusetts/Connecticut border. Ground elevation at the confluence of the Westfield and Connecticut Rivers is about 48 feet msl.

The West Springfield Project consists of : an 18-foot-high, 447.5-foot-long timber crib dam with a dam crest elevation of 92.80 feet above mean sea level (msl) that creates a 20-acreimpoundment; a 2,610-foot-long, 50-foot-wide power canal with concrete headworks containing six gates; a concrete and brick powerhouse about 60 feet long, 54 feet wide, and 63 feet high containing two vertical Francis turbines connected to two 480-volt generators; and a tailrace approximately 157 feet in length and having a width varying from 30 to 48 feet. There are no primary transmission lines included in the project.

Unit One is rated at 900 kilowatts (kW) and Unit Two is rated at 466 kW. However, due to flow restriction in the power canal, the combined capacity is 1,200 kW (Unit One at 800 kW and Unit Two at 400 kW). The project’s average annual generation is 5.5 gigawatt-hours (GWh).

The project currently operates as a run-of-river facility (inflow equals outflow instantaneously). The hydraulic capacity of the project is 622 cubic feet per second (cfs) (400 cfs for Unit One and 222 cfs for Unit Two). The adjacent Southworth Company also draws water from the power canal to operate their own generating facility. When DSI’s facility is not operating and inflows are below the hydraulic capacity of the turbines used by the Southworth Company, all inflow is spilled at the dam.

Powerhouse-outside

Powerhouse-outside

Powerhouse - inside 1

Powerhouse – inside 1

Certification History

March 4, 2016: LIHI Executive Director Michael J. Sale, using authority delegated from the LIHI Governing Board, has issued a Preliminary Certification Decision that the West Springfield Hydroelectric Project (FERC No. P-2608) satisfies the LIHI Certification Criteria.  This Preliminary Certification Decision includes one facility-specific condition, as follows:

  • Condition 1.  During downstream fish passage periods, the fish exclusion racks/screens shall be maintained at the head of the power canal to the satisfaction of the Massachusetts Division of Fish and Wildlife (MA DF&W) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The Owner shall continue to coordinate with MA DF&W regarding the installation, removal and maintenance of these exclusion racks/screens. In its Annual Compliance Statement to LIHI, the Owner shall include a statement confirming that such agency coordination has been successfully completed.  If any formal, written concerns about fish passage operations are received by the Owner from either agency, the Owner shall notify LIHI within 30 days. In such an event, LIHI may request a report from the Owner identifying the planned corrective actions and implementation schedule to remedy the reported problem.

As provided for in Section 2.14 of the LIHI Handbook, the Preliminary Certification Decision to certify, along with the Application Reviewer’s report and (if prepared) report of the Executive Director, will be posted on the Institute’s Web page for 30 days.  Notice of the posting will be provided to all individuals or organizations that commented on the initial Application Package.

Any Commenter may submit a letter to the Executive Director requesting an appeal within the 30-day period.  The appeal request must state specific reasons why the hydropower facility should have failed one or more criteria.  If an individual or organization did not comment on the initial Application Package, they may not file an appeal.  Further information about the LIHI appeal process is available in the LIHI Handbook, available at http://lowimpacthydro.org/certification-program-html/.

If no appeal is requested within the 30-day period, the Executive Director will issue LIHI Certification for the facility and post a notification of certification on the Institute’s website.  Once final, the effective certification date for the West Springfield Project is August 29, 2015 for a five (5) year term, which will expire on August 29, 2020.

October 21, 2015: The Low Impact Hydropower Institute received a complete application for a new term of Low Impact Certification for the West Springfield Hydroelectric project on October 21, 2015.  The application materials can be found in the Files section below.

The public comment period for this application closed on December 21, 2015.

June 19, 2015: The West Springfield Project has been granted an extension of the current certificate term. The new expiration date is December 31, 2015. See ExtensionLetter_2015Recert for explanation below.

December 28, 2012: The West Springfield Project has been certified for a second five year term after it was determined that the project continues to meet the Low Impact Hydropower certification criteria. The effective date of certification is August 29, 2010 and it expires on August 29, 2015.

November 29, 2010: A&D Hydro, Inc. has submitted an application for recertification of the West Springfield Hydroelectric Project. In filing for recertification, the applicant states that there has been no change in conditions relevant to the certification.

December 8, 2005: The West Springfield Project has been certified as low impact for a five year term, effective August 29, 2005 and expiring August 29, 2010.

August 29, 2005: A&D Hydro, Inc. has submitted an application for certification of the West Springfield Project, located on the Westfield River.

Canal

Canal

 


Files: