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I&M Raises River Level to Spring/Summer Levels at Elkhart Hydroelectric Plant

May 23, 2024

Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) has announced it has completed raising the water level upstream of the Elkhart Hydroelectric Plant on the St. Joseph River to its normal spring and summer level. The annual process was delayed due to ongoing maintenance work on the dam that began in the spring and was necessary in order to raise the water levels.  

“We understand that the delay had the potential to affect those who rely on the reservoir for everything from recreational enjoyment to economic development opportunities. We appreciate the crews who have been working six days a week since the project began to meet our goal timeline. We also want to thank the Elkhart community for their patience as we worked as quickly and safely as possible to complete this project,” Katie Davis, I&M vice president of external affairs and customer experience, said.

Maintenance work began in early April with the goal of being completed by Memorial Day. In advance of the maintenance process, I&M cautioned affected customers who had not already put boats and other watercraft in the river to consider waiting until work has been completed. 

I&M will continue monitoring the dam throughout the summer pool period. There is still the potential that it might be necessary to lower water levels later. I&M will continue to keep customers updated on any next steps related to work around its hydroelectric facility in the future. Again, thank you for your patience and we hope everyone has a safe, fun summer.

Customers who have questions can contact I&M customer service at 260-408-3724 or IMCustomerService@aep.com. Project updates are available at www.IndianaMichiganPower.com/News.

I&M runs the Elkhart Hydroelectric Plant in accordance with its license issued by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The Elkhart Hydroelectric Plant has been owned and operated by I&M since 1913. It is one of six run-of-river hydroelectric plants on the St. Joseph River. “Run-of-river” means all the water coming into the plant from upstream is passed through downstream of the dam (i.e., inflow equals outflow). Combined, I&M’s six hydroelectric facilities generate more than 22 megawatts of electricity – enough to power 15,000 homes a year.

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Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is headquartered in Fort Wayne, and its approximately 2,000 employees serve more than 600,000 customers. More than 85% of its energy delivered in 2023 was emission-free.  I&M has at its availability various sources of generation including 2,278 MW of nuclear generation in Michigan, 450 MW of purchased wind generation from Indiana, more than 22 MW of hydro generation in both states and approximately 35 MW of large-scale solar generation in both states. The company’s generation portfolio also includes 1,497 MW of coal-fueled generation.

At American Electric Power, based in Columbus, Ohio, we understand that our customers and communities depend on safe, reliable and affordable power. Our nearly 17,000 employees operate and maintain more than 40,000 miles of transmission lines, the nation's largest electric transmission system, and more than 225,000 miles of distribution lines to deliver power to 5.6 million customers in 11 states. AEP also is one of the nation's largest electricity producers with nearly 29,000 megawatts of diverse generating capacity, including approximately 6,100 megawatts of renewable energy. AEP is investing $43 billion over the next five years to make the electric grid cleaner and more reliable. We are on track to reach an 80% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions from 2005 levels by 2030 and have a goal to achieve net zero by 2045. AEP is recognized consistently for its focus on sustainability, community engagement and inclusion. AEP's family of companies includes utilities AEP Ohio, AEP Texas, Appalachian Power (in Virginia and West Virginia), AEP Appalachian Power (in Tennessee), Indiana Michigan Power, Kentucky Power, Public Service Company of Oklahoma, and Southwestern Electric Power Company (in Arkansas, Louisiana, east Texas and the Texas Panhandle). AEP also owns AEP Energy, which provides innovative competitive energy solutions nationwide. For more information, visit aep.com.


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