Columbia Lake

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Columbia Lake

Postby The Royal Coachman on June 24th, 2016, 7:17 am

http://www.njherald.com/article/20160623/ARTICLE/306239984#

Does anyone know when the damn was sold to the DEP? This article says It was owned by a Vermont company since 1983.

I feel like there must be a back story here. Where is the opposition coming from? A private company decided to sell the damn rather than upgrade it and the new owners want to take it down.

I'm all for it. Let the river run free!!!
I fish because the voices in my head tell me to
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Re: Columbia Lake

Postby Fredy on June 24th, 2016, 8:25 am

Agust can give you the down lowborn what went down. He has been to all of the meetings.
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Re: Columbia Lake

Postby Rusty Spinner on June 24th, 2016, 10:14 am

Fredy wrote:Agust can give you the down lowborn what went down. He has been to all of the meetings.


And he has been at them with me :lol:

Tim, story is wrong. The DEP has always owned the dam, but they leased it to a Vermont company that owns or leases hundreds of small hydro dams all over the country. This lease was coming up, but had a bunch of years left with the state. However, the FERC license was up for renewal and it was clear there would be a fish passage structure called for to renew that license to continue to produce a relatively small amount of hydro power. The cost of adding fish passage to a dam this size was excessive when compared to the paltry $30,000 or so per year in electric generation, hence the return on investment (ROI) was horrible. The person holding the lease sold that lease and his FERC license rights and is working to remove the license (retire the license is the formal thing that is happening). To convince him in part not to pursue re-licensing, and because he is such a staunch supporter of "green energy" (we can argue if hydro power dams are truly green energy), the offset was to build roofs over the Pequest Trout Hatchery to keep avian predators out that are the likely vector of furunculosis and then place solar panels over the roofs. This solar array will out produce the dam by a significant amount, although I don't recall percentages. It's a win-win for everyone as the firm with the lease on the dam is involved with the solar power which is far more "green" than damming a free flowing river that is part of our food web for both salt and freshwater.

In the end, this is about trying to restore American shad and other anadromous fish to the one NJ river flowing into the Delaware with the best chance to see shad return in numbers. We had/have high hopes for the Musky with shad, but that fish just isn't as well suited to the Musky when it comes to spawning needs. The Paulins Kill is much better in that area (length and depth and speed of pools is key in combination). Hope that helps.
Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land. Aldo Leopold
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Re: Columbia Lake

Postby Rusty Spinner on June 24th, 2016, 10:22 am

I should add that Terry McDonnell is the same McDonnell as McDonnell Douglas, the massive defense contractor and aerospace builder of planes and the like. He is offspring of the founder, grew up idealistically in the 60s, and firmly believes hydro power is clean energy without recognizing the issues it causes for water quality and fish habitat. But he was given a large chunk of cash to sell his license and is getting a piece of the solar energy, so he's happy in the end.

Also, Knowlton has zero say as a town since they do not own the dam any more than any of us - we ALL own the dam because we are taxpayers. There has to be an open public meeting anyway, so the town insisting on one shows how little they understand about dam removals. This sucker is coming out and sooner than most will know.
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Re: Columbia Lake

Postby The Royal Coachman on June 26th, 2016, 7:57 am

Rusty Spinner wrote:In the end, this is about trying to restore American shad and other anadromous fish to the one NJ river flowing into the Delaware with the best chance to see shad return in numbers. We had/have high hopes for the Musky with shad, but that fish just isn't as well suited to the Musky when it comes to spawning needs. The Paulins Kill is much better in that area (length and depth and speed of pools is key in combination). Hope that helps.


I couldn't agree more. I've never seen any historical evidence that the Musky had a Shad run. Until it came down they could have run up to the Finesville dam but I never saw that or ever saw a dead Shad. The Paulins Kill on the other hand did have a Shad run in the past and they still run up to the first dam.
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