New to Hydro Regulations? This FERC 101 Workshop Can Help

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New to Hydro Regulations? This FERC 101 Workshop Can Help


September 19, 2022


Jeremy Chase-Israel, Content Development Specialist, NHA


New to Hydro Regulations? This FERC 101 Workshop Can Help

NHA thanks our sponsors:

Kleinschmidt Associates

There’s a lot happening at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).  

FERC is seeing an increase in submitted applications for permits to develop new hydroelectric projects … likely a consequence of the Inflation Reduction Act.  

At the same time, FERC staff is knee-deep in processing new license (relicense) applications for existing projects. (FERC licenses for 281 hydropower facilities expire by 2030. 

And, the Division of Dam Safety and Inspections is implementing the updates made late in 2021 to the commission’s hydropower project safety regulations. 

Whether you are new to the industry and looking to develop new hydropower, or recently moved into hydro at your organization from another industry or technology, one of the most crucial needs is to understand how the industry is regulated. 

To help you and others working in hydro and dam safety understand FERC’s regulatory responsibilities and how the commission functions, staff at FERC’s Office of Energy Projects are teaching a “101” course at the upcoming Clean Currents event. Clean Currents, the National Hydropower Association’s conference + tradeshow taking place in Sacramento, California, the week of October 17, was created to provide a space to foster industry development, information exchange, and innovation. 


The half-day Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 101 Workshop is Tuesday, October 18, 2022, from 8 a.m. to Noon. Cost to attend is only $50. 

During the workshop, FERC staff will provide an introduction to FERC and its hydropower and dam safety programs.  

Attendees will have the opportunity to learn more about FERC’s licensing and compliance divisions, as well as the role of FERC’s regional offices.  

Also covered will be advice on how to effectively participate in FERC hydropower proceedings. 

Enroll in the workshop – one of a number of “special events” when you register for Clean Currents. 


Tuesday, October 18, 2022, is “Workshop Day” at Clean Currents.  

In addition to the FERC 101 workshop taking place Tuesday morning, you’ll find several options offered on Tuesday afternoon relevant to regulatory-related topics. 

For example, the Basin-Scale Planning and Off-Site Mitigation workshop, taking place from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., is co-led by a state natural resource agency and a regulatory consulting firm. The leaders will share progress made in understanding how to best implement basin-scale planning and resource management, as well as week your feedback and ideas. 

Then, from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., you can participate in the workshop: “Public Safety around Dams: Federal Programs Undergoing Significant Change — Are You Prepared?”

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s recent amendment to its Part 12 Dam Safety regulations governing the safety of hydroelectric projects includes significant changes for dam owners’ public safety programs. The Commission is anticipating issuance of new Public Safety Guidelines in the near future. By participating in this workshop, you’ll learn: 

1) What’s on the horizon for project owners to develop a public safety plan

2) Why is FERC adopting a Risk Assessment approach? What has changed? 

3) How to be able to develop capital budgets that are targeted and phased appropriately

4) What requires incident reporting under the FERC April 2022 updated Part 12 rules 

5) Why a corporate culture of embracing public safety makes good business sense and is worth making it a stand-alone program (separate from dam safety) 

These workshops are included in your Clean Currents registration (no additional charge). 

A complete list of all the workshop offerings can be found here.