economic analysis

Economic values of freshwater in the United States

Volume: 
Final Report, October 1995
Year: 
1995
Abstract: 

This report presents nearly 500 water value estimates for four withdrawal uses (domestic, irrigation, industrial processing, and thermoelectric power generation) and four instream uses (hydropower, recreation/fish and wildlife habitat, navigation, and waste disposal). The first section discusses important caveats for interpreting the data and the relevance of water values for achieving efficient use of the resource. Tables and graphs are used to summarize and help interpret the water-value data that have been converted to constant 1994 dollars. Section 3 presents the data by geographic region to illustrate how the values within a region vary among uses. Section 4 presents the data for individual water uses to illustrate how the values for specific uses vary within each of the 18water resources regions that comprise the conterminous United States. Information such as the location, year, and methodology used to derive each of the values are presented in the appendices along with each of the water value estimates. The data are organized by water resources region in Appendix B and by type of use in Appendix C.

Author(s): 

Frederick, K., VandenBerg, T., Hanson, J.

Contact: 

Resources for the Future, 1616 P street, NW,, Washington, DC

Notes: 
Category: 

Protecting Fish

Volume: 
October 1994 pp72-76
Year: 
1994
Abstract: 

The United States Department of Energy's Hydropower Program has recently completed a study of fish passage and protection mitigation practices at conventional hydroelectric projects. The study used 16 projects as case studies to provide detailed illustrations of mitigation practices, allowing a better understanding of the resource and economic requirements, and the ramifications of mitigation choices. The study also surveyed fish passage and protection mitigation practices at 1,825 hydroelectric plants regulated by FERC to determine the frequencies of occurrence, temporal trends and regional practices based on FERC regions. Facilities with upstream mitigation employed fish ladders (62% of facilities), trapping and hauling (11%), fish lifts (5%), and other methods (35%). Some facilities used multiple forms of mitigation, this accounts for the percentage total greater than 100%. Downstream mitigation is used in some form at 13% of the 1,825 sites studied. Mitigation costs varied greatly, depending on the size of the facility and extent of mitigation. Fish ladder capital costs rang from $1000- $34.6million with an average cost of $7.4million per fish ladder. The costs of fish passage and protection measures can have significant effects on the economics of a project. However, forecasting the need for fish passage mitigation is complicated due to many site-specific concerns. Specific mitigation needs are often met with specific technologies including fish lifts, trapping and hauling systems, or fish ladders. In any case, mitigation determinations should be made with an eye toward biological needs as well as economic feasibility.

Author(s): 

Francfort, J., Rinehart, B.

Contact: 
Notes: 

American Rivers produced abstract

Category: 

Evaluating relicense proposals at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

Volume: 
Paper No. DPR--2 April 1991
Year: 
1991
Abstract: 

In this paper, I discuss how we on the Commission staff use economic principles to evaluate relicense proposals and how we use the results of our economic and environmental studies to choose the option that we think gives the greatest benefit to the public. I'll describe the two kinds of project changes applicants often propose--environmental enhancements and power improvements. And I'll talk about how we decide among the applicants' proposals and alternative proposals that we, the agencies, and the interveners make: the baseline we use to compare them, how many alternatives we consider, and the three methods we use. After this, I'll give you two examples of choosing among relicense proposals: this way, you'll see how we apply the method we use the most and what difficulties we face in making these choice. This paper is and outline instead of a detailed manual. It's intended both for us and for those of you outside the Commission. When we evaluate relicense applications, this paper will help us organize our studies. If you are involved in relicensing outside the Commission, I think this paper will help you in two ways: you'll understand better how we look at relicense proposals and you'll be able to make a better case for the proposal you think gives the greatest benefit to the public.

Author(s): 

Fargo, J.M.

Contact: 
Notes: 
Category: 

Deciding competing resource use issues at FERC--from theory to practice

Volume: 
n/a
Year: 
1993
Abstract: 

By the close of the December 31, 1991, deadline, the licensees of 158 hydroelectric plants, totaling roughly 2,000 megawatts of installed capacity, had filed applications for relicense with the Commission. Though we on the Commission staff will now need to consider many aspects of each proposal, the most controversial aspect we'll face is how to choose among competing uses of each waterway. In this paper, I'll present both the theories that guide how we select among applicants' proposals and alternative proposals and the methods we use to make these choices. After discussing the theory and methods, I'll give examples from two recent environmental assessments to show how we choose the license option that we think gives the greatest benefit to the public. This way, you'll see how we apply these methods, what aspects are important, and what difficulties we face in making these choices.

Author(s): 

Fargo, J.M.

Contact: 
Notes: 
Category: 

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