FERC says permit application is incomplete
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — A plan to shunt water from Wyoming to the Front Range of Colorado through a 500-mile pipeline hit a speed bump last week, as the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued a letter saying that a permit application for the project is incomplete.
The Regional Watershed Supply Project, first propossed in 2008 by a private water development entity known as Million Conservation Resource Group, would divert water from the Green River via Flaming Gorge Reservoir to the greater Denver area.
Proponent Aaron Million had at first submitted the project for review and approval to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, but earlier this year resubmitted it to FERC as a project that would generate hydropower.
The Corps terminated its review in late July. And last week, the FERC said Million must provide more specific information on proposed pump stations for the pipelines, as well as new reservoirs that would also be part of the diversion project. The federal agency also seeks more information on other permits that might be needed as part of the project.
An excerpt from the FERC letter:
“Because the Commission would only have jurisdiction with regard to the proposed hydroelectric development, which is only one component of the proposed 501-mile-long water supply pipeline project, construction of substantial parts of the overall project may require permits from other federal agencies. For the 3,212 acres of federal land you identify in exhibit 3, please identify the responsible federal agencies that manage those lands.”
An excerpt from the Corps letter:
“The Corps’ regulations at 33 CFR 325.1(d) require that a permit application, in order to be considered complete, must contain the purpose and need for the proposed activity. The original permit application submitted for the RWSP stated that the purpose of the project was water supply for southeastern Wyoming and the Front Range of Colorado. This project purpose was utilized for all EIS related work, to include public and agency scoping. The primary purpose of the project may now change to electrical power generation, an activity appropriately under the purview of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Since the purpose of the project is now fluid and the need for a Section 404 Clean Water Act permit is uncertain, the Corps now considers the permit application incomplete.”
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