LIHI Certificate #159 – Macomb Project, New York

The Macomb Hydroelectric Project is the most downstream hydroelectric project located at river mile 17.3 on the Salmon River in the Town of Malone in Franklin County, New York. From its headwaters in the Adirondack Mountains, the Salmon River flows approximately 50 miles northwest to its confluence with the St. Lawrence River near Dundee, Quebec.

The Project was originally constructed in 1899. A second powerhouse was built in 1904 (High Falls No. 2) upstream of the original powerhouse which was subsequently retired in 1940. The Project is owned by Erie Boulevard Hydropower, LLC (Brookfield Renewable Energy Group) and was most recently relicensed by FERC in 2006.

The dam is a concrete gravity overflow-type dam, 106 feet long and 32 feet high that impounds the 14-acre Lamica Lake impoundment. A 38‐foot‐long, 25‐foot‐high intake structure along the left bank of the river leads to a 6.5‐foot‐diameter, 60‐foot‐long gated penstock, which in turn leads to the powerhouse. The powerhouse contains a single horizontal Francis unit with a capacity of 1 MW.

The Project is operated in a pulsing mode with a good faith effort (per the license order) to maintain impoundment fluctuations within 0.25‐foot when river flow exceeds 125 cfs and a run‐of‐river mode when river flows are 125 cfs or less. The intake and penstock create a short bypassed reach, approximately 100 feet long.

Project Name Macomb
LIHI Certificate No. 159
LIHI Certificate Term April 26, 2019 - April 25, 2024
Owner Brookfield Renewable Energy Group
State New York
Location River Mile 17.3 on the Salmon River
Installed Capacity 1.0 MW
Average Annual Generation 6,200 MWh
Facility Type Run of river
FERC No. P-7321 issued 2006, expires 2041

Certification History

September 4, 2019: The decision to certify the Macomb Hydroelectric Project is final. No appeals were received during the appeal period which closed on August 22, 2019. The certification term for the Project is from April 26, 2019 through April 25, 2024.

July 22, 2019: The Low Impact Hydropower Institute has preliminarily approved Low Impact Certification for the Macomb Hydroelectric Project.

This decision is preliminary pending the 30-day appeal window. Only those who commented on the initial application during the 60-day comment period are eligible to file an appeal. Such appeal needs to include an explanation as to how the Project does not meet the LIHI criteria. Appeal requests can be submitted by email to with “Macomb Hydroelectric Project” in the subject line, or by mail addressed to the Low Impact Hydropower Institute, 329 Massachusetts Ave, Suite 6, Lexington, MA 02420. All requests will be posted to the website.  The applicant will have an opportunity to respond and any response will also be posted. Requests must be received by 5 pm Eastern time on August 22, 2019.  The full application and reviewers report are available below.

If no appeal requests are received and the decision becomes final, the Certification term for the Project (pending LIHI #159) will be April 26, 2019 for a term of five (5) years, which will expire on April 25, 2024.

April 30, 2019: The Low Impact Hydropower Institute has received a complete application for Low Impact Certification of the Macomb Hydroelectric Project.  LIHI is seeking public comment on this application.  Specifically, we are interested in knowing whether you think the Project meets the LIHI Low Impact Certification Criteria, as revised in the 2nd Edition Handbook.  Please review the program and criteria in LIHI’s revised Handbook and then review the Project’s application materials below.

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 with “Macomb Project Comments” in the subject line, or by mail addressed to the Low Impact Hydropower Institute, 329 Massachusetts Avenue, Suite 6, Lexington, MA 02420.  Comments must be received on or before 5 pm Eastern time on April 20, 2019 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.