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Shared Solutions: Cooperative Hydropower Relicensing in the Great Lakes Region

Year Awarded: 1999
Awarded: $255,000
Team Leader:  American Rivers

This team partnered with the Hydropower Reform Coalition to advance its cooperative hydropower relicensing efforts on Great Lakes tributaries. The team ensured that license conditions were implemented by collaborating with state and federal agencies, licensees, non-government organizations and communities in relicensing proceedings.

The team worked on 76 dams in 22 drainage basins in New York, Michigan, and Wisconsin. At the project’s end, American Rivers and the HydroPower Reform coalition were engaged in negotiation, settlement, and implementation phases for FERC re-licensing for 72 dams in 19 river basins in New York, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Licensing agreements were being implemented for 60 of the dams.

Implementation projects were successful at improving natural flows, particularly in river reaches below the lower-most dam on each tributary.