The Washington Department of Ecology is seeking comment on what should be considered when preparing an environmental impact statement for a new hydropower project proposed along the Columbia River in Klickitat County.
Free Flow Power Project 101, LLC (FFP Project), is proposing to build a closed-loop water storage system that releases water from an upper reservoir downhill to a lower reservoir to generate energy. The power produced would feed into the electrical grid at nearby John Day Dam.
The lower reservior would be located on a portion of the former Columbia Gorge Aluminum smelter site. Water for the project would be drawn from the Columbia River under a permit that once served the aluminum plant. Project plans call for the lower reservoir to be filled once, with supplemental fills annually.
Ecology is asking community members, stakeholders, tribes and others to weigh in on what should be studied in the scope of a full EIS for the Goldendale Pumped Storage Energy Project, including project alternatives, site impacts and what types of mitigation should be considered.
Scoping comments will be accepted through Feb. 12, 2021, and may be made online or in writing to Sage Park, Washington Department of Ecology, 1250 West Alder Street, Union Gap, WA 98903-0009, Attn: Goldendale Scoping.
People can learn more about the project, and make formal comments on the scope of the project during two online meetings:
- Jan. 27 from 6 to 8 p.m., online at https://tinyurl.com/GoldendaleEnergyJan27 or by phone at 415-655-0001, access code 177 243 8033
- Feb. 3 from 10 a.m. to noon, online at https://tinyurl.com/GoldendaleEnergyFeb3 or by phone at 415-655-0001, access code 141 470 2345project website.
More information about the meetings and the project documents can be found on the project website.