Dam removal can have huge benefits for rivers, people, and healthy ecosystems. As hydropower dams across the country are aging and their owners are evaluating the future of these projects, many owners are deciding to remove their dams and restore the rivers on which they operated. Many of these projects are old, uneconomic, and cause greater harm to the environment than can be justified by the amount of power they generate.
The FERC relicensing process presents an opportunity for public engagement in the operation of hydropower dams, and research shows the relicensing process is the most common time when dam owners decide to remove a dam. With 1/3rd of FERC hydro projects coming up for relicensing by 2038, this is the time to work towards removing as many obsolete projects as possible to restore the health of our rivers for the benefit of people, fisheries, and the broader environment.
In this webinar, Katie Schmidt of American Rivers presented the new Practitioner’s Guide to Hydropower Dam Removal and discuss critical elements of the policy and practice of removing hydropower dams, as well as the data and decision-making process behind successful projects. Learn when and how to get involved in the process, some key factors, and hear about specific case studies.