Learn about the hydro potential on the Upper Mississippi River

Upper Mississippi River Hydroelectric Power Workshop

July 18, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Western Illinois University - Moline, IL Campus

Register Here

River Action will host a hydropower workshop, “Hydro Potential on the Mississippi River,” July 18 to examine America’s first renewable energy source – water.

The workshop at Western Illinois University’s Riverfront Hall, Moline, is designed to bring together U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, state departments of natural resources, developers, dam owners, energy utilities, clean energy and environmental groups, engineers, public works, municipal and city officials to explore opportunities for hydropower in the Upper Mississippi River.

One of the organizers, Adam Burke, program manager at River Action, says he’s looking forward to learning about the latest technology for water power.

“We’re working with the local Rock Island District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which covers nine of 26 locks and dams on the Upper Mississippi. Through their staff we connected with Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee and they gave us some names and a speaker, too,” Burke said.

He said the program committee was looking for a "deep dive" into hydropower potential.

Western Illinois Professor Roger Viadero is working with a research team at his Institute for Environmental Studies to produce a white paper ahead of the event. The background guide will cover the impact and potential for hydropower in the Upper Mississippi River Basin and be available online.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory speaker Adam Witt will present on the standard modularization of hydropower and water resources. Witt said his program is analogous to the Michigan Water Withdrawal Assessment, a tool for water management and conservation of the Great Lakes and groundwater supply.

Keokuk, Iowa inventor Paul Roos, CEO of AMJET Turbine Systems, also will speak about his composite turbine systems that might eventually be produced in Iowa. Roos said three prototypes were recently finished in Denmark and are currently being tested.

Martin Weber, project manager at Stanley Consultants; Jake Arnold, an environmental analyst from MidAmerican Energy; Jim Bartek, hydropower coordinator at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Rock Island district); Mel Koleber, vice president of Rye Development (a Boston-based hydropower company); and Jay Richter, energy manager at Rock Island Arsenal, will present at the conference.

Early registration through July 1 is $25. After July 1, registration is $50.

CLICK HERE to register online.

Certificates for professional development hours will be available at the workshop. Credits may vary by discipline.

The event is part of an effort to “Raise the Grade” of the Mississippi River and one of the seven actions identified as a “priority objective” that emerged from the 2016 Upper Mississippi River Conference (UMRC) held last fall in the Quad Cities.

On Oct. 11-12, River Action will host the 10th annual UMRC.

Confirmed presenters

Coon Rapids Dam – History and Future of Hydropower
• Martin Weber, Senior Project Manager, Stanley Consultants
• Project Manager for the Coon Rapids Dam Rehabilitation Project

Expanding Energy Infrastructure: The History and Future of Hydroelectricity at Rock Island Arsenal and Lock & Dam 15
• Jay Richter, Energy Manager, Rock Island Arsenal Public Works Department

Section 408 modifications to Completed Structures – An Overview
• Jim Bartek, P.E., U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island District

Powering the Mississippi with the ATS-63 Composite Turbine/Generator
• Paul Roos, CEO, AMJET Turbine Systems. hydro propulsion inventor, Keokuk, IA

Modularization & Modeling for Low-Head Waterways
• Adam Witt, Ph.D., R&D Associate, Energy-Water Resource Systems, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee

Who Foots the Bill? Creative Financing for Energy Generation
• Mel Koleber, vice president of Rye Development, Boston, MA

Connecting the Dots: Energy Generation, Regulation and Starting Up
• Jacob Arnold, Senior Environmental Coordinator, MS, MBA, MidAmerican Energy

Conference sponsors are: River Action, Inc., Rye Development, Stanley Consultants, The Moline Foundation, City of Davenport and Western Illinois University - Institute for Environmental Studies.