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Skagit Project Relicensing: Draft License Application Submitted

Seattle City Light has submitted a Draft License Application (DLA) to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). This is an important, and required, milestone in the Skagit River Hydroelectric Project relicensing process and a testament to City Light’s continued collaboration with Tribes, Canadian First Nations, federal and state agencies, and other licensing participants. 

What’s in the DLA?

The DLA is not comprehensive of all the issues related to the City’s hydropower dams, but is a snapshot of the considerable progress being made by City Light and partners. It has important information about the Project, including why the Skagit River Hydroelectric Project should be relicensed, how the Project is managed, what the power generated by the Project is used for, what it costs and related issues.

Relicensing involves complex environmental issues that are made all the more challenging by our changing climate. While hydropower is essential to providing Seattle with clean energy, we know that no energy source comes without cost. That’s why the relicensing process is so important. The license and other partner agreements will show how City Light is managing the watershed ecosystem as a whole, and how City Light manages issues like flood management, impacts on fish and wildlife, recreational opportunities, education, cultural resources, and harvests for Tribes.

The draft also includes a detailed environmental analysis, which comes from our extensive collaboration with partners. Licensing participants have actively worked with City Light to develop the proposed protection, mitigation, and enhancement measures included in the DLA. (You can find the DLA and a summary of the proposed measures on the Skagit Relicensing web page.)

What’s Next

While there’s more work to be done, licensing participants, researchers, engineers, and others have made significant progress. City Light will continue engaging with our partners and using FERC-approved studies to further develop the Final License Application (FLA).

The FLA is on track to be submitted in April 2023.