Sandy River Dam Removal

Project Name: Sandy River Dam

Summary: Comprehensive dam removal services

Client: Madison Electric Works

Project Location: Madison, ME

Services Provided:
•  Dam Decommissioning Study
•  Regulatory Strategic Planning
•  FERC Licensing (Surrender)
•  Study Scoping & Plan Development
•  Cultural Resource Studies &
•  Agency Consultation
•  Stakeholder Facilitation
•  Federal, State and Local
•  Wetland and Wildlife Impact

Client Needs:
The Sandy River Hydroelectric Project was located on a major tributary to the Kennebec River with potential for restoration of Atlantic salmon and other anadromous fish. Faced with the prospect of an $800,000 fish ladder construction, Madison Electric Works pursued dam removal.
Kleinschmidt Solution:
Kleinschmidt was selected to investigate strategies to cost-effectively facilitate the dam removal and habitat restoration effort by innovatively addressing a wide range of environmental impact issues including the potential effects of the removal on shoreline erosion and ice floe dynamics, wetlands, mussels, rare plants, wildlife, archaeological resources, and fish habitat. Kleinschmidt facilitated a series of meetings between Madison Electric Works and a consortium of state and federal agencies, and non-governmental organizations to identify strategies to assure the restoration of historic and important Atlantic salmon spawning habitat. Kleinschmidt evaluated potential costs and environmental impacts associated with the removal. This evaluation included ongoing input from agencies and stakeholders, as well as a detailed review of the engineering, permitting and habitat challenges associated with removing this dam including: dam removal strategies, timing, and cost estimations; economic impact analysis for rate payers; identification of FERC requirements for license surrender; agency negotiation to identify appropriate wetland and wildlife impact analysis as it relates to post-removal water levels; identification of applicable State and Federal regulations and permits; and sources of funding for removal.
Client Benefits:
This cooperative effort, established through open discussion between all interested parties, led to early identification of potential environmental engineering, and regulatory issues, as well as potential funding sources for dam removal. Kleinschmidt ultimately completed the dam removal design, FERC license surrender, and permitting. The dam was successfully removed in 2006.