Feds Reject Proposed Dam On Bear River In Southeastern Idaho

Jun 16, 2016

Credit J. Stephen Conn / Flickr Creative Commons

Federal authorities have rejected a request by an irrigation company in southeastern Idaho to build a dam on the Bear River.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Thursday voted to deny Twin Lakes Canal Company's license application for a 109-foot-high dam with a 10-megawatt powerhouse.

Commissioners say the project would inundate the Bureau of Land Management's Oneida Narrows Research Natural Area with resulting loss of recreation, wildlife and fishing resources that could not be replaced.

A final environmental impact statement released last month recommended commissioners reject the project, citing the potential loss of 4.5 miles of river, 425 acres of wildlife habitat and the scenic Oneida Narrows.

The canal company said the proposed reservoir would provide irrigation water to about 230 farmers and ranchers.