BC HYDRO IS SUBMITTING AN application to the provincial authorities to decommission the Coursier dam, located about 30km south of Revelstoke, in southeastern British Columbia, Canada. Coursier dam is situated high up in an isolated mountain valley above the west side of the Arrow lakes reservoir, formed by the Hugh Keenleyside dam on the Columbia river. Water discharged from the Coursier dam flows into Cranberry Creek and from thereon through a penstock to the 8MW Walter Hardman generating station, prior to being released into the Arrow Lakes reservoir. Decommissioning of Coursier dam will decrease generation at Walter Hardman from about 48.5 to a range of 33 to 38 GWH/yr.
The decision to decommission the dam was taken due to an ongoing history of deficiencies and remedial works, required by the Coursier Dam to bring it up to present day engineering and safety standards. BC Hydro’s dam safety investigations had lead to the dam being operated at a reduced reservoir level since 1998. According to the utility, the main long-term benefit of decommissioning will be the elimination of a threat to public safety. As part of the decommissioning, BC Hydro is developing plans for the restoration of the inlet tributaries and outlet channel to return Cranberry Creek to pre-dam levels. Coursier dam was built in 1963 by the City of Revelstoke. The dam height was raised in 1969, and the dam was purchased by BC Hydro in 1972.