Block ip Trap

Rye Development Grows Non-Powered Dam Portfolio Filing Preliminary Permits for Three New Projects in West Virginia

07 Dec 2022

Rye Development (Rye), a leading U.S. hydropower developer with a current pipeline of over 25 projects in 10 states, has received three preliminary permits from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for retrofitting existing non-powered dams with renewable hydropower generation. The preliminary permits are for projects in West Virginiaincluding Hildebrand Lock and Dam, R.D. Bailey Dam, and Sutton Dam. These latest projects add to Rye's growing portfolio in West Virginia and speak to the growth in demand for 24/7 renewable energy products.

"Rye looks forward to additional expansion into West Virginia where there is a distinct opportunity for repurposing existing infrastructure to create renewable energy and support the local workforce and communities," said Paul Jacob, CEO of Rye. "These projects can serve as a reliable and sustainable energy solution and aid in paving the way toward West Virginia's goal of energy-independence."

The Hildebrand Lock and Dam is a navigational facility located on the Monongahela River between the communities of Morgantown and Fairmont. R.D. Bailey Dam is a flood control facility located on the Guyandotte River, near Justice, WV. Sutton Dam is a flood control facility on the Elk River, near the town of Sutton, WV. All three facilities are operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Each of the proposed project sites will repurpose existing infrastructure and double down on the United States and West Virginia's goal of energy-independence. Additionally, these non-powered dam projects create new jobs and economic activity, investing nearly $100 million and creating 150-200 family wage jobs per project, for the surrounding communities. When fully FERC permitted, the projects would receive a 50-year license to operate.

These three facilities were originally constructed for non-energy benefits and continue to support critical flood control and navigation needs in West Virginia today. Rye's unique approach transforms existing non-powered dams into hydropower facilities which strengthens and reinvests in critical infrastructure. Unlike wind and solar, when operational, the hydropower generation is predictable and not vulnerable to intermittent changes when the wind doesn't blow, or the sun doesn't shine. When constructed, the three projects will provide between 15 and 20 MWs of local, renewable power.

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