Commission Staff prepared a final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed licensing of FFP Project 101, LLC’s (applicant) 1,200-megawatt Goldendale Energy Storage Project No. 14861.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) participated as a cooperating agency to prepare the draft and final EIS.

FFP Project 101, LLC (applicant) filed an application for an original license on June 23, 2020, to construct and operate the closed-loop pumped storage project which would be located about 8 miles southeast of the City of Goldendale, Klickitat County, Washington, with transmission facilities extending into Sherman County, Oregon.  The project would occupy 18.1 acres of federal land owned by the Corps and administered by the Bonneville Power Administration.

The primary issues associated with constructing and operating the project are:  (1) soil erosion and fugitive dust during construction; (2) the effects of project construction on surface and ground water quality; (3) the effects of water withdrawal for the initial fill and make-up water on downstream juvenile salmon migration; (4) the potential entrainment of salmon smolts when filling the reservoirs; (5) increased concentrations of dissolved solids, nutrients, and heavy metals in the reservoirs over time; (6) the loss of 193.6 acres of wildlife habitat and temporary disturbance of 54.3 acres of wildlife habitat; (7) the increased risk of bird and bat mortality from nearby wind turbine interactions caused by their attraction to the project reservoirs; (8) unavoidable adverse effects on five individual archaeological resources, the Columbia Hills Archaeological District, and three Traditional Cultural Properties (Pushpum, Nch’ima, and T’at’ałíyapa), (9) the potential reduction in Tribal access to usual and accustomed plant gathering sites, and (10) changes in the aesthetic character of the landscape, particularly as they relate to Tribal cultural practices.

In the final EIS, Commission staff recommend the Staff Alternative, which consists of issuing a license that includes the measures proposed by the applicant, the conditions required by the Clean Water Act section 401 water quality certification, and certain staff-recommended modifications and additional measures submitted by state and federal agencies, Tribes, and non-governmental organizations.

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This page was last updated on February 08, 2024