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Kettle river dam awaits approval

A private developer, Power-house Energy Corporation (PEC) has submitted a C$25M proposal for constructing a run-of-river dam and a 25MW hydro plant on the Kettle river in British Columbia, Canada. PEC hopes to complete construction in 2001 but it must obtain approval from several provincial and federal agencies in Canada and the US prior to the commencement of construction. As it stands now, approval of the project is far from certain.

The dam, to be constructed near Cascade just north of the US/Canada border, would divert water upstream of Cascade Falls on the Kettle river, into a power house to be constructed below the falls. The proposal has been greeted with little enthusiasm from people in both countries who live along the river. While not officially opposed, the US Forest Service and US Fish and Wildlife Service each wrote letters of concern to the BC government. The agencies worry that the project may increase the temperature of the river or cause other changes that could harm native fish, including endangered bull trout. PEC says the dam would have little environmental impact, as it has no significant storage and all diverted water is being returned to the river.

Originating in the mountains of southeastern British Columbia the Kettle river flows 220 miles before joining the Columbia river near Kettle Falls, in Washington, US.