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Project Summary - Upper American River Project

(FERC No. 2101)

The 688 MW Upper American River Project is the Sacramento Municipal Utility District's largest resource and its only hydroproject, generating some 1.8 billion KWh/year, all of it used to meet native load. It consists of 11 reservoirs and nine powerhouses on several streams, most notably the South Fork of the American River, Silver Creek and the Rubicon River. Most of the projects were built during the 1960s, though the final 11.5 MW Jones Fork facility came on in 1986. The current license expires in July of 2007. SMUD has initiated an alternative licensing process at FERC, and is seeking a new, 50-year license. SMUD expects to spend $20 million on the relicensing process alone, a figure that does not include the cost of running the project under the new license. The utility wants to add a 400 MW pumped storage project utilizing one of the existing reservoirs; feasibility and economic studies show that doing so has merit in terms of added operational flexibility. SMUD has filed its initial information package and has completed about 80 percent of its studies. It is just now beginning negotiations with interested parties to work out protection, mitigation and enhancement (PM&E) measures, which would be reflected in a draft application SMUD hopes to file in November 2004.

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