Essex, CT – July 28, 2022 – Kleinschmidt Associates, an engineering, regulatory, and environmental consulting firm, has been selected by FirstLight Power Services LLC (FirstLight) to provide fish passage effectiveness evaluation services as part of the Scotland Hydroelectric Project Fish Passage and Protection Plan.
The Scotland Hydroelectric Project is located on the Shetucket River in the town of Windham, CT. Completed in 1937, the station has been supplying green energy to the region for over 80 years. It operates as part of a trio of renewable hydroelectric dams in Eastern Connecticut that generates a total capacity of approximately 6.3 MW of carbon-free electricity.
In 2018, FirstLight completed upgrades to the Scotland Project’s infrastructure, including building a state-of-the-art fish elevator (or lift) and downstream bypasses for migrating fishes. Prior work by Kleinschmidt has demonstrated that fishes pass safely through the lift. In 2022, additional studies are underway to evaluate the effectiveness of downstream passage for juvenile alosines and silver phase (adult) American Eel.
“Kleinschmidt has repeatedly exhibited the ability to adapt to disruptions due to unforeseen conditions, including drought, COVID pandemic response protocols, and extended outage periods,” says Steve Leach, Senior Fishery Biologist with FirstLight, “This was done through a deep understanding of project needs to efficiently conduct study elements individually or concurrently as required by changing conditions.”
“It’s exciting to see this new fish lift perform and restore ecological connectivity in the drainage, which supports a host of diadromous species that will benefit from the project,” says Bryan Apell, Project Manager and Senior Fisheries Ecologist at Kleinschmidt. “The studies that FirstLight and Kleinschmidt are conducting will help us understand the effectiveness of the new fish passage facilities to provide safe, timely, and effective passage for those species that rely on access between freshwater and marine habitats; to fulfill their life histories.”
“Kleinschmidt has repeatedly exhibited the ability to adapt to disruptions due to unforeseen conditions, including drought, COVID pandemic response protocols, and extended outage periods, applying a deep understanding of Project needs to efficiently conduct study elements individually or concurrently as required by changing conditions.”
Kleinschmidt Associates performs engineering, regulatory and environmental consulting for North American energy companies and governmental agencies who strive to protect and enhance the natural environment without compromising performance. We work at the intersection of regulatory requirements, environmental science, and engineering solutions to achieve our client’s objectives.
For over half a century, Kleinschmidt has continually delivered new ideas that offer practical solutions to tough problems and sensitive issues. Our goal is to bring energy, water, and the environment into balance so future generations will thrive. For more information, visit www.kleinschmidtgroup.com.