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The Department of Energy (DOE) is currently inviting comments from the general public on guidance relating to the implementation of Section 242 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the “Hydroelectric Production Incentive Program.”

In the Fiscal Year 2014 Omnibus Appropriations Bill, Congress directed the Department of Energy to provide $3.6 million “for the purposes of Section 242 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.” Although this legislation was originally passed in 2005, no funding was appropriated at that time. Section 242 directs the Department of Energy to make incentive payments to the owner or operator of a qualified hydroelectric facility based on the number of kilowatt hours of hydroelectric energy generated by the facility during the incentive period. Any qualified owner or operator of a hydroelectric facility who added hydropower to non-powered dams or conduits between 2005 and 2015, but where the original dam/conduit was built prior to 2005, is eligible to apply for the Section 242 Incentive Program.

DOE has identified the former Renewable Energy Production Incentive program, which was active from 1992 until the mid-2000s, as being the guiding framework for the Hydroelectric Production Incentive Program. Because the Hydroelectric Production Incentive Program has only been appropriated for one year with a limited budget, DOE will only be accepting applications for generation produced in calendar year 2013. If more than $3.6M worth of payments to eligible entities qualifies, DOE will calculate an equally distributed payment system based on power production. The guidance contained in the document available for download below describes a process that will be followed for application and distribution of payments.

The open comment period begins on Tuesday, July 1, 2014 and ends on July 16, 2014.

Please address comments to Steve Lindenberg at

Draft Guidance for Section 242 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005

DOE anticipates that we will accept applications in late July and early August of 2014 for electricity production in calendar year 2013.