EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSRenewable Energy A Small But Important Part Of State's Mix
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Kennie Bass
Videographer: John Tincher
Web Producer: Kennie Bass
Reported: Aug. 23, 2013 8:18 PM EDT
Updated: Aug. 23, 2013 11:38 PM EDT
Glen Ferris , West Virginia
This is the West Virginia dam producing the most electricity in the state, Hawk's Nest Hydro, which has a capacity of 102 megawatts, nearly one fourth of the entire state's hydropower generation.
"In West Virginia our hydro production is not as significant as some other states," Jeff Herholdt, director of the West Virginia Division of Energy said. "In western states for example. Washington state, their biggest provider of hydro is federal dams".
West Virginia'a total hydropower capacity is 462 megawatts. But that could double in the next few years. Eight proposed facilities are in the midst of the permitting process. Together they have a capacity of 475 megawatts.
"It gives us access to another resource," Herholdt said. "We're an energy state. Only Texas and Wyoming are more significant producers of energy than the state of West Virginia. We have made energy one of our principle businesses in the state of West Virginia."
Although hydropower is dwarfed by West Virginia's most abundant resource, Herholdt says utilizing renewable energy is important for the state.
"Hydro's role in power here, it's a steady low-cost energy supply that is blended in with higher cost sources," Herholdt said.
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