Harrington Park, New Jersey (October 11, 2016) – On September 28, 2016, the Low Impact Hydropower Institute (LIHI) received a complete application from Massachusetts Water Resources Authority for the Low Impact Certification of the Chicopee Valley Aqueduct (CVA) Fish Hatchery Project, FERC No. CD14-8-000, located in the Chicopee River Basin in the town of Ware, Hampshire County, Massachusetts.

Project Name Chicopee Valley Aqueduct (CVA) Fish Hatchery
Owner MA Water Resources Authority
State Massachusetts
Location Located in the Chicopee River Basin in the town of Ware, Hampshire County, Massachusetts.
Installed Capacity 0.065 MW
Average Annual Generation 427 MWh
Facility Type Conduit
FERC No. CD-148-000

The CVA-Hatchery Hydroelectric facility is a conduit facility. It is not associated with a dam on a river.

The hydropower facility is owned and operated by the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA). The MWRA is a public instrumentality and a Commonwealth of Massachusetts authority, charged with providing water and sewer services.

The FERC Project Number is CD14-8-000. On January 8, 2014, FERC Division of Hydropower Administration and Compliance issued a written determination that the Chicopee Valley Aqueduct-Fish Hatchery pipeline project meets the Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility criteria under FPA section 30 (a) [as amended by Section 4 of the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2013], and is not required to be licensed under Part 1 of the FPA. The conduit facility uses a pipeline or water conveyance that is operated for the distribution of water for agricultural, municipal, or industrial consumption and not primarily for the generation of electricity. Given FERC’s determination, there is no expiration date.

The facility will be constructed in 2016 – 2017 and is expected to be operational by May 2017. The total name-plate capacity will be approximately 65 KW. The average annual generation is estimated to be 427,000 KWh. The project will consist of one Francis turbine. It will operate in a continuous mode; the pipeline to hatchery is being constructed to convey 9.3 cfs or 6 mgd continuously, except during periods of drought or MWRA operational constraints. This distribution of water to the hatchery is the primary purpose of the project. Water will be conveyed to hydro facility from the MWRA’s existing Chicopee Valley Aqueduct (CVA), which is a large diameter water supply transmission main that is approximately 15 miles long and 48-inch (upper section) and 36-inch in diameter. The CVA begins at MWRA’s Quabbin Reservoir, a massive water supply reservoir with 412 billion gallons of storage.

This is a conduit hydropower facility that is associated with a 4,700 foot pipeline that is being constructed off of the MWRA’s existing CVA pipeline, and that will terminate at the MA Department of Fisheries and Wildlife McLaughlin Fish Hatchery. To convey water to the Hatchery, the CVA will convey an additional 9.3 cfs (6 mgd), on top of the water that the CVA already conveys to downstream communities. Flow to the hatchery will not change other operational parameters.

The water supply, transmission and distribution system associated with this conduit hydropower facility is as follows:

  • The CVA was constructed in 1949: while the new conduit will be a side service connection to the Hatchery is being constructed by MWRA in 2016. It will be a 20-inch pipeline that will tap raw water off of the CVA on the grounds of MWRA’s Brutsch Water Treatment Plan. The hydropower facility will be located on the Brustch Treatment facility’s grounds. Downstream of MWRA’s property, the 20-inch pipeline will be under the care and control of the MA. Department of Fish and Wildlife, Division of Fish and Game.
  • The length of the CVA between the intake and the Brutsch Treatment facility/tap to the hatchery pipeline is 3,200 feet: the length of pipe between the tap at the CVA for the hatchery pipeline and the powerhouse is 420 feet.

This application is filed under the 2nd Edition Handbook, Revised March 2016. LIHI is seeking public comment on this application.  Specifically, we are interested in knowing whether you think the CVA Fish Hatchery project meets the LIHI Low Impact Certification Criteria.  Please review the program and criteria in LIHI’s 2nd Edition 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 “CVA Fish Hatchery 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 comment period begins on October 19, 2016.  Comments must be received at the Institute on or before 5 pm Eastern time on December 18, 2016 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.

Harrington Park, New Jersey (October 21, 2016) – LIHI received a comment letter from the Department of Fish and Game in regards to the certification of the CVA Fish Hatchery Project. The letter can be found in the Files section below.


2016 Certification