Consulting Solutions that Work for People and the Environment

Conowingo Hydroelectric Project and Muddy Run Pumped Storage Project Relicensing

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Since 2005, Gomez and Sullivan, along with a team of subconsultants, has been providing lead licensing services to Exelon Generation Company, LLC (Exelon) for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) relicensing of the 573-MW Conowingo Hydroelectric Project (FERC No. 405) and the 880-MW Muddy Run Pumped Storage Project (FERC No. 2355), both located on the Susquehanna River near the Pennsylvania/ Maryland border. Initial relicensing activities consisted of the establishment of a relicensing management team, development of an overall relicensing strategic plan, and implementation of several key management and technical tools. The Gomez and Sullivan team was then responsible for filing the Notices of Intent (NOI) and Pre-Application Documents (PAD) for both projects in 2009.

Following the filing of the PADs, Exelon received study requests from several stakeholders, including Maryland Dept. of Natural Resources, PA Fish and Boat Commission, PA Dept. of Environmental Protection, Susquehanna River Basin Commission, USFWS, and NOAA Fisheries. To address these requests, the Gomez and Sullivan team developed a Revised Study Plan (RSP), which included 47 separate study plans for stakeholder issues and concerns related to water quality, sedimentation, fish passage, wetlands, recreation, endangered species (shortnose sturgeon), and cultural resources. The final study plan determination was issued by the FERC in February 2010.

During the 2010 and 2011 field seasons, the Gomez and Sullivan team conducted the studies required by the final study plan determination to gather critical information in support of Exelon’s eventual positions during agency negotiations as well as its license applications, which are due to be filed in August 2012. These studies included investigations related to upstream and downstream passage of American eel and shad, water quality, sediment transport and deposition, recreation and shoreline management planning. Gomez and Sullivan technical staff were directly responsible for the execution of studies related to instream flow and aquatic habitat, water use and operations modeling, bathymetric data collection, and downstream flooding impacts assessment. Gomez and Sullivan is also responsible for development of the license applications for each project, which will include a full environmental impact assessment, which FERC will use as a basis for its NEPA evaluation of the Projects.