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> The Project > Fact Sheet and FAQs > FAQs > Implementation and Outreach

What happens during Phase 2 of the project?

During Phase 2 (implementation) of the project, the Penobscot Trust worked with its partners and contractors to remove the Great Works (2102) and Veazie (2013) dams and construct the Howland bypass. Great Works Dam was removed first to account for fisheries management activities; work to remove the dam was complete in November 2012. The Trust removed the Veazie Dam in 2013 and is completing ancillary work at the site. The Howland bypass was completed in 2016.

As a direct result of the Penobscot River Agreement energy production at the West Enfield, Medway, and Stillwater dams was increased, and the Orono Project was refurbished and brought back on-line in early 2009. As a result, the average annual generation on the Penobscot River was increased by approximately 29,000 megawatt hours early in the project implementation. Black Bear Hydro has invested significant time and resources into its efforts to enhance generation at remaining facilities, including adding new powerhouses at Stillwater and Orono, and will also be installing turbines in vacant bays at its Milford Project with the support of the Trust and other parties, as called for under the Penobscot River Agreement. These considerable investments in hydropower generation facilities within the local communities are expected to replace and possibly increase the energy that will be lost as a result of the decommissioning of Veazie, Great Works and Howland Projects.

Did the Trust have to get permits to undertake the project?

In the fall of 2008, the Penobscot River Restoration Trust filed permit applications to begin the process of extensive agency review. Included in the permit applications was preliminary design plans for the dam removal and bypass construction, and a comprehensive environmental analysis of the likely impacts of the proposed action and action alternatives. After nearly two years of agency review, including a lengthy public comment period and substantial formal and informal outreach efforts, the Penobscot River Restoration Trust received all necessary state and federal permits by November of 2010 from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection.

How is the Penobscot River Restoration Trust involved in community outreach?

The Penobscot Trust and its many public and private partners in the Penobscot River Restoration Project have provided many opportunities for people throughout the Penobscot basin to learn about and provide input into the project, including its goal of improving fish migration to nearly 1000 miles of habitat in the Penobscot basin. Since 2003, we have gathered feedback at formal and legally noticed permitting meetings as well as through hundreds of presentations to town councils, local civic and business groups, economic development councils, schools, landowners and other individuals as well as at festivals, sportsmen shows, conferences, and many community events. The media has featured the project with well over 100 articles in local and statewide print and online news outlets, along with television and radio.

Thousands of people in the region have attended meetings or participated in public events to learn more, have their questions answered, and share their thoughts, concerns and support for the Penobscot River Restoration Project. While the Penobscot Trust has received all the permits necessary to complete the project, discussions with community members and groups continue, yielding many ideas that will improve its implementation, help to anticipate and address concerns as appropriate, and help to maximize ecological, economic, cultural and other benefits of a restored river. Visit our Events page to see the wide range of events that have highlighted the project either through presentations, workshops, or project exhibits. 

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