Company Says Taking River Water For Balsams Snowmaking Would Hurt Hydroelectric Facilities

Apr 9, 2015

Withdrawing water from the Androscoggin River to provide snowmaking for the Balsams resort would adversely affect 15 hydro-electric facilities downstream, the Brookfield Renewable Energy Group says in a filing with the state’s Department of Environmental Services.

And, Brookfield can’t support the project unless there is a guarantee that the developers of the Balsams will compensate it for any lost revenues, according to a letter sent to the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services.

The letter was filed during the comment period as the state considers whether to allow water to be pumped from the river about 10 miles to Dixville where it would be used for an expanded ski area.

The expanded ski area is a key part of developer Les Otten’s plan to turn the Balsams into a year-around, world-class resort.

Next week the House will be considering a bill that would have the state guarantee a $28 million loan to the Balsams, money Otten says is necessary for the project to go forward.