NHA Announces 2019 Outstanding Stewards of America’s Waters Award Winners
Washington, D.C. (April 3, 2019) – The National Hydropower Association is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Outstanding Stewards of America’s Waters (OSAW) Awards, which recognizes projects that have provided extraordinary recreational, historical, environmental or educational value. This year’s winners include: Snohomish County PUD, Brookfield Renewable, Seattle City Light, Exelon, Bonneville Power Administration, Hydropower Foundation and Foundation for Water and Energy Education.
“Once again, the hydropower industry has exhibited true excellence in environmental and recreational enhancement,” said Linda Church Ciocci, NHA Executive Director. “From habitat restoration to literally reaching for the stars, these companies went above and beyond to find innovative solutions to improve the communities in which they serve.”
OSAW Awards are given out in three distinct categories: Recreational, Environmental & Historical Enhancement, Public Education and Operational Excellence.
Recreational, Environmental & Historical Enhancement
Three companies received an award in the Recreational, Environmental & Historical Enhancement category, which recognizes projects that provide enhanced recreational opportunities for the general public; offer measurable benefits that mitigate, conserve, preserve or enhance the natural resources; or conserve historical aspects of hydropower facilities and their integration with the surrounding community.
Seattle City Light: Mill Pond Dam Removal and Sullivan Creek Habitat Restoration
With an innovative approach focused on restoring floodplain connectivity, system resiliency and recovery of native fish populations, Seattle City Light, undertook the challenge of removing Mill Pond Dam. The project restored connectivity to more than 46 miles of upstream habitat on Sullivan Creek. All told, the project included more than 85 acres of floodplain and riparian restoration, 9,000 linear feet of restored channel, and 7,000 linear feet of channel enhancement. READ MORE ABOUT SEATTLE CITY LIGHT HERE
Brookfield Renewable: Eel Weir and Heuvelton Nature-Like Fishways
Brookfield developed the first Eel Weir and Heuvelton nature-like fishways in New York, which provide an innovative and natural means for upstream and downstream migration of lake sturgeon, American eel, and other riverine species. Designed to emulate natural riffle and pool river channels, the Fishways are a unique, effective, and natural means of allowing fish to pass unharmed through the developments. READ MORE ABOUT BROOKFIELD HERE
Exelon: Muddy Run Observatory
Going above-and-beyond its recreational obligations, Exelon constructed the Muddy Run Observatory. The observatory is open to the public for stargazing every month, with presentations by local amateur and professional astronomers. READ MORE ABOUT EXELON HERE
Two projects received an award in the Public Education category, which recognizes programs that effectively communicate and promote the benefits of hydropower through mediums such as curriculum, learning centers, videos or outreach programs.
Bonneville Power Administration: Hydropower Flows Here Campaign
Hydropower Flows Here is a comprehensive strategic communications initiative created by the Bonneville Power Administration to increase public awareness of and appreciation for the many benefits of Northwest hydropower. The initiative uses a combination of digital media, traditional media and events to educate Northwest residents on the clean, reliable and economic benefits of hydropower. READ MORE ABOUT BPA HERE
Hydropower Foundation : Hydro Think Tank
As a way to introduce kids to the challenging, rewarding and plentiful opportunities available in the industry, the Hydropower Foundation partnered with Southern Company to establish the Hydro Think Tank. Twelve students were divided into four teams to find a solution to a dissolved oxygen. The successful competition led to 75 percent of participating students going on to pursue jobs in hydropower. READ MORE ABOUT HYDROPOWER FOUNDATION HERE
Foundation for Water and Energy Education – Hydro Appreciation Day
Thinking out of the box, the Foundation for Water and Energy Education established “Hydro Appreciation Day” in partnership with the Seattle Mariners. It held a first-ever game day event to recognize the benefits of hydropower, with more than 900 hydro fans in the section. The event included an information booth in the concourse featuring hydropower projects and statistics, for fans to visit and learn more about hydropower. READ MORE ABOUT FWEE HERE
One project won an award in the Operational Excellence category, which recognizes projects that add value to the hydropower industry through technical contributions, innovation, engineering, upgrades and improvements or technology breakthroughs for new hydropower technologies.
Snohomish County PUD: Water Temperature Conditioning
Following the discovery that water temperatures in its new fish passage system at Diversion Dam were too cold to reintroduce migrating fish, Snohomish County PUD constructed an innovative the Water Temperature Conditioning Structure to provide a seasonally- desirable water temperature regime for aquatic species in the Sultan River. READ MORE ABOUT SNOPUD
About the Outstanding Stewards of America’s Waters Awards
In 1994, the National Hydropower Association (NHA) created the Hydro Achievement Awards to recognize organizations and projects committed to excellence in the development and operation of hydropower. In 1999, NHA added the Outstanding Stewardship of America’s Rivers (OSAR) Report to profile the best examples of hydropower’s ability to generate clean, renewable, reliable and affordable electricity while protecting the riverine ecosystem. Beginning in 2007, these two recognition programs were merged to more effectively provide recognition to deserving organizations and to reflect the changing nature of the hydropower industry, particularly the fact that hydropower can be used in various waterways. The new award program is called the Outstanding Stewards of America’s Waters (OSAW).