I’ve been looking at engineering drawings, received from the Park Board via a Request for Public Data, for the Mill Ruins Park Tunnel Stabilization Project that was completed 3 years ago. In a nutshell, the Park Board draws water out of the Mississippii River, at essentially the same spot the Crown Hydro Project would, and runs water under the boardwalk through a 3 foot diameter pipe so tourists can see what water coming out at the tailrace looks like.
I had asked the Park Board about water taken from the Mississippi River and channeled through the tailrace near the proposed Crown Hydro project by the MPRB for the years 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008. The response I got from the Park Board is, and I quote:
The MPRB has no data responsive to – water takeout from the Mississippi River and channeled through the tailrace near the proposed Crown Hydro project by the MPRB for the years 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008.
This is a three foot diameter pipe we’re talking about. So I called the Contractor’s Civil Engineer for the poject, and asked how much water went through that three foot pipe. Keep in mind how wide the river is, at the St. Anthony Falls area, and that we’re just talking about a 3 foot pipe. He told me easily 150 cfs (cubic feet per second) would be flowing through that pipe. Crown Hydro’s engineer told me a three foot pipe at that point could easily take up to, if not over, 300 cfs of water through the pipe.
Here’s my point – since a major objection of those opposing Crown Hydro is diverting “more” water from the falls, and since the Park Board is already diverting water away from the falls, if the Crown Hydro project simply took the water the Park Board was diverting for purely and only aesthetic reasons, there could be clean and green energy generated with no net loss of water over the falls.
The water that Crown would use would end up in the exact same place as the water the Park Board now uses to keep the tourists “happy” by something to look at; the tailrace.
And again, keep in mind – this is just with the water going through a 3 foot diameter pipe the Park Board already uses; 2 or 3 (possibly 4) more of those three foot diameter pipes is apparently all it would take to provide all the water for Crown Hydro to run at full capacity and provide electricity for over 2,000 Minneapolis homes.
Keep that total of three or four (or even five) pipes in mind, while you look at this picture of St. Anthony Falls.
And keep that in mind, while considering there’s a hearing in two days that might open the door for more nuclear plants in Minnesota.
Right now, there’s electricity going down the river that’s NOT electricity; how soon until there’s another nuclear plant built – because projects like the Crown Hydro Project weren’t built?
Wednesday, March 25, 2009 – 6:30 PM
Joint Meeting: Committee on Energy, Utilities, Technology andCommunications and Legislative Energy Commission and House EnergyFinance and Policy Division
Chairs: Sen. Yvonne Prettner Solon and Rep. Bill Hilty
6:30 p.m. Room 200 State Office Bldg.
Discussion of nuclear power