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City Light’s Hydroelectric Legacy

Seattle City Light’s mission is to deliver affordable, reliable and environmentally responsible electricity services to you, our customer. This mission includes a dedication to environmental stewardship to enhance, protect and preserve the environments in which we operate. As we strive to be the nation’s greenest utility, we continue to look for new efficient means to operate while improving our key source of power generation: hydroelectricity. In fact, 91% of City Light’s power used by Seattle residents is generated by hydro.

Boundary Hydroelectric Project from its Vista House
Boundary Hydroelectric Project from its Vista House

City Light’s hydroelectric projects span across Washington state. Nestled in the northeastern corner of the state, the Boundary Hydroelectric Project is the largest producer of hydropower for City Light with a capacity of 1,117.4MW, more than half of City Light’s hydro. The total combined generation capacity of the City Light’s hydroelectric facilities is 1,850MW.

In 2003, the Skagit Hydroelectric Project, located northeast of Seattle in North Cascades National Park Complex, was the first large hydroelectric facility in the nation to be certified as a Low Impact Hydropower Project by the Low Impact Hydropower Institute, an independent non-profit organization that certifies environmentally responsible, low impact hydro projects.

The Alice Ross IV touring Diablo Lake

Did you know that you can actually tour City Light’s Skagit Hydroelectric Project? Whether it’s your first time or you haven’t visited in a while, a road trip to the majestic North Cascades and emerald waters is a must! Skagit Tours offer spectacular scenery in one of the nation’s most picturesque parks. We offer four excursions, including the Diablo Lake and Lunch tour that features a cruise of the glacier-fed waters of Diablo Lake. The Dam Good Chicken Dinner and Ladder Creek Falls by Night tours serve tradition on a platter with our famous chicken dinner—a classic dish that dates back to the 1930s. All tours showcase your utility’s longstanding dedication to our hydropower legacy. Start your relaxing adventure today at or call (360) 854-2589.