December 18, 2006

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's Program to Oversee Hydroelectric Dams

Pursuant to the Federal Power Act, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) regulates certain aspects of non-Federal hydroelectric dams. FERC is required to ensure the safety, stability. and integrity of these dams with the goal of protecting life, health, and property from, among other things, instances of sabotage and vandalism. To meet these requirements, FERC developed its Dam Safety and Security Programs to inspect and review safety and security efforts for about 2,600 dams. Of this number, over 900 are considered so significant or high hazard that if breached, loss of life and substantial economic and energy production disruption could result.