RECREATION ECONOMIC IMPACT STUDY
Yadkin Hydroelectric Project
Final Study Plan
Final Study Plan
Alcoa Power Generating Inc. (APGI) is the licensee for
the Yadkin Hydroelectric Project. The
Yadkin Project is currently licensed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
(FERC) as Project No. 2197. This
license expires in 2008 and APGI must file a new license application with FERC
on or before
The Yadkin Project consists of four reservoirs, dams, and
powerhouses (High Rock, Tuckertown,
As part of the relicensing process, APGI prepared and
distributed, in September 2002, an Initial Consultation Document (ICD), which
provides a general overview of the Project.
Agencies, municipalities, non-governmental organizations and members of
the public were given an opportunity to review the ICD and identify information
and studies that are needed to address relicensing issues.
To further assist in the identification of issues and data/study needs,
APGI has formed several Issue Advisory Groups (IAGs) to advise APGI on resource
issues throughout the relicensing process. IAGs
will also have the opportunity to review and comment on Draft Study Plans.
This Draft Study Plan has been developed in response to comments on the
ICD and through discussions with the Recreation, Aesthetics, and Shoreline
Management IAG, to provide additional necessary information for
consideration in the relicensing process.
The purpose of this study is to quantify the economic
contribution of recreational use at the Yadkin Project to the five county region
surrounding the Project (Davidson,
Project Operations and Current Recreational Use
Indirect and induced impacts represent the so-called multiplier effects of the recreational spending that occur across the regional economy when they are set in motion by the direct spending. These indirect and induced impacts typically are calculated using input-output multipliers. The latest IMPLAN data will be used to develop these estimates. Impacts will be measured in terms of total industry output, personal and total income, value added, and employment.
Project Operations and Recreational Use
This analysis requires two major inputs:
· Description of the future continued and alternative Project operations to be studied
Estimate of the effects of these alternative Project operations on
Description of Future Continued and Alternative Project
This description will be provided to ERM by APGI based on consultation with the Recreation, Aesthetics, and Shoreline Management IAG. ERM assumes that this will include at least continued Project operations and two alternative Project operations scenarios. Potential future operational scenarios that could be considered in the analysis include extending the recreation level of High Rock Reservoir into the spring and fall shoulder seasons, operating High Rock Reservoir with a reduced winter drawdown, and additional utilization of available storage at Narrows Reservoir.
This analysis will use as a baseline the future
recreational use estimates from the Recreational Use Assessment Study.
These estimates reflect a continuation of existing Project operations.
These estimates must be adjusted to reflect the effects alternative
Project operations may have on recreational use.
ERM proposes to apply “adjustment factors” to the baseline future use
estimates to reflect the effects of alternative Project operations on
recreational use. These
“adjustment factors” will be developed based on recreational use patterns at
“surrogate” reservoirs. These
surrogate reservoirs will be identified using the following screening criteria:
· Proximity to the study area (preferably all the reservoirs would at least be located in the Piedmont region of the southeast)
· Similar to the Project reservoirs in terms of surrounding land use (e.g., significant waterfront residential population)
· Similar operations to the proposed alternative Project operations at Yadkin
Reasonably accurate and current recreational use data are
The proposed surrogate reservoirs will be reviewed with the
Recreation, Aesthetics, and Shoreline Management IAG.
Once a surrogate reservoir has been selected for each alternative Project
operating scenario, ERM will compare monthly recreational use levels to develop
monthly adjustment factors for the Yadkin Project.
These adjustment factors will be applied to the baseline future
recreational use estimates for each alternative scenario.
Estimates of future economic effects from recreation at the Yadkin Project will be developed for each scenario, including:
· Continuation of existing Project operations and reservoir fluctuations
Altered operations and reservoir fluctuations
These estimates will be developed using IMPLAN as described
above. The only modifications to the
model will be changes in the level of recreational use and associated changes in
recreational spending. The
continuation of existing Project operations scenario will use the estimate of
future recreational use and the recreational spending per recreation day
estimate developed from the Recreation Use Assessment Study.
The alternative Project operations scenarios will use the adjusted future
recreational use (as described above) and the recreational spending per
recreation day estimate developed from the Recreation Use Assessment Study.
Each of these scenarios will also include a breakdown of the residential
and visitor contributions to overall regional economics.
As part of this analysis, EMR will also consider
information contained in the following two studies in evaluating the economic
impact associated with recreational use of the Yadkin Project on the surrounding
· North Carolina’s Central Park: The Economic Impact of an Alternative Economic Development Strategy on the Central Park Region of North Carolina (UNC Charlotte – December 1999)
North Carolina’s Central Park: Assessing Tourism and Outdoor
Recreation in the Uwharrie Lakes Region (Appalachian State University –
3.1 Draft Study Report and IAG Meetings
ERM will prepare a Draft Study Report.
The Draft Study Report will be provided to APGI and the IAG for review
and comment. ERM will attend up to 4
meetings with the IAG to review the study plan, discuss results, and comment on
the draft report.
3.2 Final Study Report
ERM will address the
comments received on the Draft Study Report and prepare a Final Study Report.
Proposed Project Schedule
This study should take approximately 6 months (after the data from the Recreation Use Assessment Study is available) to complete the draft report.