On December 17, 1997, Commission staff issued a draft environmental assessment(EA) that evaluated the potential impacts of relicensing the project. Comments on thedraft EA were considered in preparing the final EA, which was issued on February 4,1999.
The motions to intervene, protests, comments and recommendations have beenfully considered in determining whether, and under what conditions, to issue this license.
The Flagstaff Project is located on the Dead River 22 miles upstream of theconfluence of the Dead and Kennebec Rivers. The project’s principal existing featuresconsist of: (1) the 1,339-foot-long, 45-foot-high Long Falls dam; (2) Flagstaff Lake, animpoundment having a length of about 23 miles, a width of about 6 miles at the widest point, and a useable storage capacity of 275,482 acre-feet; and (3) appurtenant facilities.A more detailed project description is contained in ordering paragraph (B)(2).
Operation of the project is coordinated with two other storage projects(Moosehead and Brassua Projects), collectively known as the Kennebec River storagesystem, in the headwaters of the Kennebec River Basin to provide flood protection andreliable flows for downstream industries, municipalities, and hydroelectric generators.The Kennebec River storage system is operated by the Kennebec Water Power Company(KWP), a corporation whose member companies are FPL Energy and other downstreamhydro interests.
The KWP Engineering Advisory Committee, comprising the KWPmember companies, regulates flow releases from the three storage projects.
The Moosehead, Brassua, and Flagstaff Projects account for about 53, 20, and 27 percent, respectively, of the total available storage. Brassua Lake is located on theMoose River, a tributary of Moosehead Lake, on the Kennebec River upstream from theconfluence of the Kennebec and Dead Rivers. The Kennebec River storage system isoperated on an annual cycle under which the reservoirs are filled by spring runoff,historically occurring in May or early June. As the spring runoff subsides, the naturalflow in the Kennebec River begins to drop below a level necessary to support theindustrial, municipal, and hydroelectric uses on the river. At that time, water is drawnfrom these storage reservoirs to supplement the natural flow. With the onset of cold
Although no comments on the final EA were solicited, comments were receivedfrom FPL Energy, the Town of Eustis, the Assessor for the Town of Eustis, U.S. Senator Susan M. Collins, and State Representative Arlan R. Jodrey.
Other member companies of the KWP are Madison Paper Industries, MerimilLimited Partnership, and Scott Paper Company.