Fairfield Sun Times: Daines Applauds House Passage of Legislation to Expand Montana Hydro

Senator Steve Daines on Monday applauded the House of Representative’s passage of legislation to ensure the completion of two hydroelectric facilities in Montana.

The legislation would provide for the reinstatement and three-year extension of a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) license for Clark Canyon Dam Hydro Project in Dillon, Montana and a six-year extension of the FERC license for the Gibson Dam Hydro Project near Augusta, Montana.

“The Gibson Dam and Clark Canyon Dam are two projects that are critical for tax revenue and jobs in Montana communities,” Daines stated. “I’m excited to see bipartisan support for the completion of made-in Montana energy projects that provide a reliable source of energy and will create more good-paying jobs.”

The Gibson Dam Hydro Project is a partnership between Tollhouse Energy Company and Greenfields Irrigation District, based in Fairfield. When completed, the Gibson Hyrdo project is anticipated to provide 15 megawatts of clean energy. A megawatt-hour can power up to approximately 1,000 homes.

During its construction, the Gibson project is predicted to reate 15 to 25 jobs with up to $5 million in wages during construction, according to a press release from Sen. Daines’ office.

The hydro facility will put new revenue into Teton and Lewis and Clark County coffers, averaging $500,000 annually per county. It will also reduce more than 40,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year.

Sun River Electric Cooperative of Fairfield will receive over $200,000 per year in a “wheeling fee”