The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has granted Brascan Power New York the license for the 1MW Macomb Hydroelectric project in the town of Malone in New York, US.

FERC will now complete its environmental analysis of the licence application whilst soliciting public input. It should complete this process by the end of 2005, more than a year before the current licence expires.

Brascan collaborated with various stakeholders to reach a settlement agreement, which included ensuring that the hydro power plant is located on the Salmon river, a tributary to the St. Lawrence river, a popular trout stream.

Through the settlement, Brascan agreed to make several major improvements at the Macomb site, including:

• Installation of 2.5cm spaced trashracks to protect fish from passing through the hydro turbines. The new trashracks will replace the 6.25cm spaced trashracks currently at the site.

• Elimination of daily pond fluctuations to protect wetland resources upstream and enhance fish habitat downstream.

• Installation of a fish stocking tube to allow the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to effectively stock trout in the river downstream of the Macomb plant.

• Adoption of an interim sediment management plan to help facilitate the natural passage of sediment downstream while the DEC develops a plan for the entire Salmon river.