Navy Seeks USACE’s Permit for Kennebec River Dredging

Photo by Susan Upham

The Department of the Navy in Bath, Maine, is seeking a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to conduct work in waters of the U.S. in conjunction with periodic maintenance dredging of portions of the Kennebec River federal navigation channel in Bath and Phippsburg, Maine.

According to the USACE’s latest release, the Department is seeking a 10-year permit to conduct these works in order to facilitate the movement of U.S. naval ships constructed at Bath Iron Works (BIW) in and out of the river.

Based on historic shoaling rates and current and projected Navy shipbuilding schedules at BIW, maintenance dredging is anticipated to be needed and performed at about three-year intervals.

The first maintenance dredging event will occur during the winter of 2019/2020.

Under the plan, up to 80,000 cubic yards of predominantly sand would be periodically dredged from two locations that are prone to shoaling and have been dredged repeatedly in the past by USACE. Up to 50,000 cubic yards will be dredged off Doubling Point, within a 45-acre area to a depth of -32 feet mean lower low water (mllw) and disposed of in-river, off Bluff Head.

At the river mouth, up to 20,000 cubic yards will be dredged within a 31-acre area to a depth of -29 feet mllw and disposed of in the vicinity of Jackknife Ledge.

The deadline for submitting the comments on this plan is August 22, 2019.

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