Associated Environmental Consultants Inc. assisted Advanced Energy Systems with a Water Act application to construct a 9 MW run-of-river hydroelectric facility on South Cranberry Creek, 26 km south of Revelstoke, B.C. The South Cranberry facility was constructed and began operation in December 2007.
Since then, we have assisted with the completion of post-construction monitoring requirements based on the Fisheries Act authorization for the project. The studies range from 5 to 15 years in duration, and include monitoring riparian revegetation survival. Riparian compensation requirements include a 2:1 replacement of areas permanently impacted by the project and the 1:1 revegetation of areas temporarily impacted by construction. Tree and shrubs were planted at a density of one tree per 9 m2, and one shrub per 1 m2. Plant survival was monitored until 90% survival was reached.
Our team conducted survival rate counts and replaced dead and dying plants in years 1 and 2 of the monitoring program. In years 3 to 6, plant growth was too dense to accurately estimate survival, so monitoring methods shifted to estimating overall stem density of revegetated areas by establishing plots and completing stem counts of live trees and shrubs. The survival success rates continue to increase at this ongoing project.