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As the largest owner/operator of hydro-electric power plants in the United States, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is one of the largest suppliers of hydroelectric power in the world. In total, the Corps of Engineers oversees 75 hydroelectric power plants that have a total installed capacity of 20,474 megawatts. The annual production of nearly 100 billion kilowatt-hours, nearly a third of the nation's total hydropower output, represents enough energy to serve about 10 million households or roughly 10 cities the size of Seattle.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, produces hydroelectric power at 8 powerhouses. The majority of the power is sold to preferred utilities through the Southeastern Power Administration (SEPA), headquartered in Elberton, Georgia.

Our hydropower mission is to provide reliable hydroelectric power services at the lowest possible cost, consistent with sound business principles—in partnership with other Federal hydropower generators, the power marketing administrations, and preference customers—to benefit the Nation.

Hydropower Facilities

Allatoona Dam and Powerhouse

Located in Bartow County on the Etowah River near Cartersville, Ga., the Allatoona Dam and Powerhouse is the oldest multipurpose project in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s South Atlantic Division. Construction of Allatoona Dam was authorized under the Flood Control Acts of 1941 and 1944 and built to retain the Etowah River, a tributary of the Coosa River.

Originally delayed because of World War II, construction of the dam began in 1946 and was completed in late 1949. Allatoona Dam is a concrete gravity dam and was the first of its kind, eventually becoming the model for all future Corps of Engineers-built dams. The filling of the reservoir was completed in May 1950, and the power plant came online the same year. The current plant capacity is 85 MW.

Authorized federal purposes for the dam include power, flood control, water supply, and recreation. The current plant capacity is 85 MW and the dam impounds Lake Allatoona, a popular recreation facility that is also managed by the Corps of Engineers.  

Buford Dam and Powerhouse

The construction of Buford Dam was authorized by a 1946 Congressional Act. Construction began in 1951 and was completed in 1956. Buford Dam was built to retain the Chattahoochee River about 25 miles northeast of downtown Atlanta, Ga. The result of the project, Lake Sidney Lanier is also fed by the Chestatee River and welcomes over 7.5 million people annually. Lake Sidney Lanier is considered one of America’s favorite lakes and is the most-visited U.S. Army Corps of Engineers project.

The Buford Dam and Powerhouse are located on the Chattahoochee River at Lake Sidney Lanier in north central Georgia. The power plant came online in 1958. The current plant capacity is 126 MW.

Carters Dam and Powerhouse

Carters Dam impounds about 3,200 surface acres of water with more than 60 miles of shoreline. At 445 feet, it is the highest earth-filled dam east of the Mississippi River. Carters Dam is one of the few pump storage facility dams in the nation. Water flows through the turbines to generate power during peak demand periods. During off-peak periods, the units are reversed to pump water back to the upper pool and stored for later use.

Located 26.8 miles above the mouth of the Coosawattee River in northwest Georgia, the Carters Dam and Powerhouse were authorized by the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1945. Construction began in 1962 and was completed in 1977. The project came online in 1975. The current plant capacity is 600 MW.

Jim Woodruff Lock, Dam and Powerhouse

Jim Woodruff Dam is a hydro-electric dam on the Apalachicola River, about 1,000 feet (300 m) south of that river's origin at the confluence of the Flint and Chattahoochee Rivers. The dam impounds Lake Seminole on the common border of Florida and Georgia.

The dam is named in honor of James W. Woodruff, Sr., a Georgia businessman who spearheaded the development of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint Project.

The Lake Seminole project, originally authorized as the Jim Woodruff Lock and Dam Project by the River and Harbor Act of 1946, was the first of three locks and dams constructed for navigation, hydropower, recreation, and related-use purposes on the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River system.

Lake Seminole borders both Georgia and Florida and has 37,500 acres of water and over 22,000 acres of surrounding land. Extending up the Chattahoochee River 30 miles and up the Flint River 35 miles, Lake Seminole has 376 miles of shoreline.Construction of this multipurpose project began in 1947 and the power plant came online in 1957. The current plant capacity is 43.35 MW.

Jones Bluff Lock, Dam and Powerhouse

Jones Bluff Reservoir (also known as R. E. "Bob" Woodruff Lake) impounds the Alabama River between Montgomery and Selma in central Alabama. The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers built the Robert F. Henry Lock and Dam to create a 12,510 acre reservoir that provides navigation, hydroelectric power generation, and recreation.

Jones Bluff is a riverine impoundment meaning much of the reservoir is confined to the historic river channel. The low retention time and water storage capacity at Jones Bluff often result in frequent winter and spring flooding. Locals still refer to it as the Alabama River; however, numerous creeks have been flooded, providing a wide variety of fishing opportunities.

The City of Montgomery is located on Jones Bluff Reservoir. The Jones Bluff Powerhouse at the Robert F. Henry Lock and Dam came online in 1975. The project's current capacity is 82 MW.

Millers Ferry Lock, Dam and Powerhouse 

Millers Ferry Lock and Dam is a lock and hydro-electric dam on the Alabama River, near the community of Millers Ferry, Alabama. It was built by and continues to be operated by the United States Army Corps of Engineers.

Construction of the complex began in 1963 and was completed in 1970. The Millers Ferry Powerhouse came online in 1970 and has a generating capacity of 90 megawatts.

The dam impounds a 17,200-acre reservoir on the Alabama River, the William (Bill) Dannelly Reservoir is better known locally as “Millers Ferry.” The reservoir covers 27 square miles and has approximately 500 miles of shoreline.


Walter F. George Lock, Dam and Powerhouse

The Walter F. George Lock, Dam, and Powerhouse were authorized by the Rivers and Harbors act of 1944. Construction on the project began in 1957, and the project was placed in service in 1963.

Located on the Chattahoochee River near Fort Gaines in southwest Georgia, the power plant has a current capacity of 168 MW. The dam impounded the Chattahoochee River, which created the Walter F. George Lake.

West Point Dam and Powerhouse

West Point Lake began filling in 1974, approximately nine years after construction began. Authorized by Congress in 1962, it was the first lake in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, South Atlantic Division to have recreation designated as one of its major purposes. It is part of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint Waterway system, which runs 260 miles from Columbus, Ga. to Apalachicola, Fla.

West Point Lake and Dam are credited with many Corps of Engineers firsts, including the first use of the slurry trench technique that prevents seepage under the dam and the first use of hydraulically-operated tainter gates.

The West Point Power Project is located on the Chattahoochee River, with West Point Lake extending 35 miles along the Alabama-Georgia state line. The power plant came online in 1975. The current plant capacity is 87 MW.