Harrington Park, New Jersey (January 26, 2017) – On December 29, 2016, the Low Impact Hydropower Institute (LIHI) received a complete application from Crane and Company (Crane) for the Low Impact Certification of the Byron Weston project, FERC No. 13583, located on the East Branch of the Housatonic River in Dalton, Massachusetts – 7.97 miles upstream from the E. Branch/Main St. confluence at Fred Gardner Park in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.

Project Name Byron Weston
Owner Crane & Company
State Massachusetts
Location East Branch of the Housatonic River in Dalton, MA
Installed Capacity 250 kW
Average Annual Generation 938 MWh
Facility Type Run of River
FERC No. 13583 (exemption)

The Byron Weston Dam No. 2 hydroelectric project is constructed on a dam built in 1887.  Crane was granted a Small Hydroelectric Power Project Exemption from the FERC (No. 13583-001) and the project became operational on October 13, 2013.

The Byron Weston Project uses the water power from the existing 30- foot-high, 90- foot-long, stone-masonry Byron Weston Dam No. 2. The dam structure includes a 23- foot high, 75-foot-long spillway which comprises the majority of the dam. The dam creates a 0.94- acre impoundment with a normal water surface elevation of 1,116.7 feet North Atlantic Vertical Datum (NAVD 1988). In addition to the dam and impoundment, the project includes an existing intake structure equipped with existing trashracks and an existing headgate. The water passes through the headgate to an existing 50-foot-long, 9.5-foot-wide headrace canal. The headrace canal will convey flow to a new 15-foot-long, 4.4-foot-diameter penstock leading to a new 250-kilowatt turbine-generating unit within the existing Byron Weston Defiance Mill building. Water will then be discharged into the East Branch of the Housatonic River through a new draft tube within the existing tailrace approximately 35 feet downstream of the dam. The bypass reach created by the hydropower project is approximately 35 feet long and is configured such that it discharges backwater to the toe of the spillway.

LIHI is seeking public comment on this application. Specifically, we are interested in knowing whether you think the Safe Harbor project meets the LIHI Low Impact Certification Criteria. The Byron Weston application is subject to review using the Criteria in the LIHI Certification Handbook of 2014.  Please review the program and criteria in LIHI’s 2014 Handbook and then review the Project’s 2016 application materials posted on the project page. Comments that are directly tied to specific LIHI criteria (flows, water quality, fish passage, etc.) will be most helpful, but all comments will be considered. Comments may be submitted to the Institute by e-mail at comments@lowimpacthydro.org with “Byron Weston Project Comments” in the subject line, or by mail addressed to the Low Impact Hydropower Institute, PO Box 194, Harrington Park, New Jersey 07640. The 60 day public comment period begins on January 26, 2017.  Comments must be received at the Institute on or before 5 pm Eastern time on March 27, 2017 to be considered. All comments will be posted to the web site and the applicant will have an opportunity to respond.  Any response will also be posted.


Byron Weston LIHI Application – Dec 29, 2016