Low Impact Hydro Energy
Hydroelectric power is attractive because it uses the force of flowing water to create renewable energy. However, most major rivers and streams were dammed and developed during the 20th Century. Few viable sites remain. Green Power EMC gets energy from one low-impact hydroelectric facility at Tallassee Shoals near Athens, Ga.
How It Works: The flow of the Middle Oconee River turns turbines that produce electricity (see illustration below).
Tallassee Shoals Hydroelectric Facility
Type of Project: Tallassee Shoals is a low impact hydroelectric facility.
Location: The Middle Oconee River near Athens, Ga.
Generating Capacity: The facility is capable of producing about 2.3 megawatts (MW) of power.
Year of Commercial Operation: Commercial operation began in 1984.
Role of Green Power EMC: Renewable power produced at the Tallassee Shoals Hydroelectric Power is sold to Green Power EMC under a 10-year contract and used by EMC consumers all over the state.
Owner/Operator: Tallassee Shoals LLC.
Renewable Properties: In 2004, the Tallassee Shoals Project became the first hydropower facility in Georgia and the 12th in the nation to be certified by the Low Impact Hydro Institute. That means the facility meets the Institute’s stringent criteria in terms of river flows, water quality, fish passage and protection, watershed protection, threatened and endangered species protection, cultural resource protection, recreation, and facilities recommended for removal.