Aluminium producer Alcoa has agreed to sell its 351MW Tapoco hydroelectric project in the US to Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners for US$600M.

Tapoco is a four-station hydroelectric project located on the Little Tennessee and Cheoah Rivers in eastern Tennessee and western North Carolina, and is operated by Alcoa Power Generating Inc, a wholly owned subsidiary of Alcoa. The transaction includes the four generating stations and dams, 86 miles of transmission line, and about 14,500 acres of land associated with and surrounding Tapoco.

The transaction, which involves non-core assets, is expected to close by year-end, subject to customary federal and state regulatory approvals.

Tapoco is licensed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). It was originally developed by Alcoa to provide power for its aluminum smelting and rolling mill operations in Alcoa, Tennessee. The four dams – Calderwood, Santeetlah, Chilhowee and Cheoah – came into service between 1919 and 1957.

J.P. Morgan advised Alcoa on the transaction.