The West Delaware Tunnel Hydroelectric Project is located in Sullivan County, New York, on land owned by the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) as part of their West Delaware Aqueduct, which supplies drinking water to New York City. The Project is located in the aqueduct between the Cannonsville Reservoir and the Rondout Reservoir and is owned by West Delaware Hydropower Associates, LP (Brookfield Renewable Energy Group).
The Project was constructed in 1987 and is exempt from FERC licensing as a qualifying conduit project.
Erie has an easement for the use of the property, which includes the powerhouse and a 60-foot section of penstock. The station is located within a fenced property with an area of approximately 4,000 square yards. The powerhouse contains vertical Francis turbine with a nameplate capacity of 7.5 MW.
On a weekly basis, the NYCDEP sends Erie a weekly water allotment based upon NY City’s water supply needs. NYCDEP’s system determines the weekly water allotment based upon a number of factors including reservoir levels, inflow forecasts, climatology, and water quality. If there is a given allotment from the NYCDEP, Brookfield will then determine the flow rate and timing schedule to deliver the requested allotment over the period specified. Typically, Brookfield will run its turbine at best efficiency to maximize power for a peaking schedule.
|Project Name||West Delaware Tunnel|
|LIHI Certificate No.
|LIHI Certificate Term
||March 29, 2019 – March 28, 2029|
|Owner||Brookfield Renewable Energy Group|
|Location||West Delaware Aqueduct|
|Installed Capacity||7.5 MW|
|Average Annual Generation||26,400 MWh|
|FERC No.||P-9159 exempt 1986|
July 16, 2019: The decision to certify the West Delaware Tunnel Hydroelectric Project is final. No appeals were received during the appeal period which closed on July 13, 2019. The new certification term for the Project is from March 29, 2019 through March 28, 2029.
June 12, 2019: The Low Impact Hydropower Institute (LIHI) has preliminarily approved Low Impact Certification for the West Delaware Tunnel 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 firstname.lastname@example.org with “West Delaware Tunnel 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 July 13, 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 #151) will be March 29, 2019 through March 28, 2029.
April 2, 2019: The Low Impact Hydropower Institute has received a complete application for Low Impact Certification of the West Delaware Tunnel 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 email@example.com with “West Delaware Tunnel 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 June 1, 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.