Langdale and Riverview Projects Proposed License Surrenders
On December 18, 2018, Georgia Power filed applications with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to surrender the licenses for two hydroelectric projects located on the Chattahoochee River — the Langdale Project (FERC No. 2341), located in Georgia east of Valley, Alabama, and the Riverview Project (FERC No. 2350), located one mile downstream from the Langdale Project in Chambers County, Alabama and Harris County, Georgia. The licenses for the Langdale and Riverview Projects will expire on December 31, 2023.
In the surrender applications, Georgia Power proposes to decommission and remove the dams associated with these projects. Removal of the project dams will benefit aquatic species by enhancing the area’s riverine shoal habitat consistent with Georgia Power’s ongoing environmental stewardship efforts and will provide a scenic and unobstructed stretch of river for local communities and visitors, including enhanced river connectivity for natural recreational paddling experiences.
This website will host information on the license surrender process, including Georgia Power's filings related to the surrenders, as well as schedules and public meeting notices.
What is Georgia Power proposing to do with the Langdale and Riverview hydroelectric project licenses?
On December 18, 2018, Georgia Power filed applications with FERC to surrender the FERC licenses for the projects. Georgia Power is proposing to decommission the Langdale and Riverview Projects and remove Langdale Dam, Crowhop Dam, Riverview Dam and the Riverview Project powerhouse.
Why is Georgia Power proposing to surrender the Langdale and Riverview FERC licenses and remove the dams and Riverview powerhouse?
The Riverview and Langdale dams were constructed for West Point Manufacturing Company. Riverview was constructed in phases from 1906 through 1918, adding Crowhop diversion dam in 1920, and Langdale was constructed from 1904 through 1908. In the early years of operation, the powerhouses produced some of the electricity needed to run the adjacent mills, and the remaining electricity was purchased from the local utility. In 1930, West Point Manufacturing Company determined that it was more efficient to obtain all the electricity from the local utility and sold the Langdale and Riverview Projects to Georgia Power. Over time, the generating units developed maintenance issues, and by 2009 they were no longer operable or repairable; thus, Georgia Power proposes to surrender the licenses, the legal mechanism for hydroelectric power generation.
Georgia Power considered several factors in developing a proposal for the degree to which the dam should be removed. By removing the dams, 11 miles of Chattahoochee River will be returned to a free-flowing system and provide a scenic and unobstructed stretch of river for local communities and visitors, including enhanced river connectivity for natural paddling experiences, an idea that has already been contemplated by the Chattahoochee Blueway Project. In addition, an increase in the availability of river shoal habitat may benefit several Georgia species of interests.
When will the process to remove the dams and powerhouse begin?
Georgia Power is currently licensed by FERC to operate the Langdale and Riverview Projects. FERC is an independent agency of the federal government that, among other responsibilities, licenses the construction of new hydroelectric projects, re-licenses existing projects, and oversees ongoing project operations, including dam safety and environmental compliance.
Georgia Power's December 18, 2018, surrender applications included a proposed schedule for the dam decommissioning and removal, as follows:
- Conduct Decommissioning Studies: January 2019 through Fall 2019
- File Final Decommissioning Plan with FERC: December 2019
- Implement FERC-approved Dam Decommissioning Plan and Obtain Governmental Permits Related to Decommissioning: Beginning Spring 2023
Who will make the decision about whether Georgia Power can remove the Langdale and Riverview Projects?
As a FERC licensee, Georgia Power cannot remove features of the licensed projects unless FERC approves the proposal. FERC makes the final decision about whether Georgia Power can remove the Langdale and Riverview Projects, after considering comments from resource agencies and the public.
Can I participate in the FERC process?
Yes. Prior to issuing a decision on Georgia Power’s proposal, FERC will conduct a thorough analysis and will comply with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. FERC’s proceeding will include opportunities for the public to provide input on Georgia Power’s proposal and will involve taking a comprehensive look at the potential environmental and other consequences of Georgia Power’s proposal.
Individuals interested in participating in the FERC proceeding for the Langdale and Riverview projects should review “FERC’s How-to Guide on Online Public Comment” and consider eSubscribing to the dockets for the Langdale and Riverview Projects using docket numbers, P-2341-033 and P-2350-025, respectively.
Georgia Power will post its FERC filings on this website.
If the dams are removed, how will the project area be changed by the removal of the dams?
Georgia Power has retained a licensed civil engineer with expertise in water modeling to determine how dam removal may affect the project area. The water model will consider the current characteristics of the river and predict how it may respond following dam removal. This will include the volume and velocity of water coming through the river channel and the physical characteristics of the project area. The results of the water model will be filed with FERC and will be made publicly available as part of the decommissioning process.
We are happy to answer any questions you may have about the Langdale and Riverview Projects. Please email inquiries to G2LangRiver@southernco.com. You can also use the form linked below to join the stakeholder mailing list to be notified of current and upcoming activities related to the proceedings.Join our mailing list