Muddy Run Pumped Storage Facility

Muddy Run Pumped Storage Facility, owned and operated by Constellation, is a pumped-storage hydroelectric plant that generates energy for peak demand periods, typically during morning and early evening hours. The eight-unit power station provides 1,070 megawatts (MW) of electricity by damming the Muddy Run ravine. This output is crucial for meeting the dynamic peak electricity demands on the regional power grid, especially on hot summer afternoons. Water from the upper reservoir at Muddy Run powers the turbines, flowing into the Conowingo Pond, a 14-mile stretch of the Susquehanna River in Maryland. During low demand at night, the units reverse and pump water back into the upper reservoir for future use.

History of Muddy Run Pumped Storage Facility

Muddy Run has been supplying electric power to the regional transmission system since it began commercial operation in 1966. At its inception, it was the largest pumped-storage hydroelectric power plant globally. The turbines and generators have been recently refurbished, and Constellation received a 40-year license from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in 2016, allowing Muddy Run to continue providing clean, renewable electricity to households in parts of south-central Pennsylvania and northern Maryland through 2055.

Economic Impact of Muddy Run Pumped Storage Facility

Constellation spends more than $40 million annually to operate and maintain both Conowingo and Muddy Run facilities, contributing nearly $5 million annually in property taxes. The plants share a workforce of over 60 Constellation employees, who ensure the facility's efficient operation and maintenance.

Community Involvement of Muddy Run Pumped Storage Facility

Constellation and its employees at Muddy Run are actively engaged in the local community through various charitable activities and volunteer efforts: 

  • Contributions to local United Way chapters, the Airville Fire Company, and Operation Warm.
  • Muddy Run Recreational Park offers a 100-acre lake surrounded by 700 acres of woodlands and fields. The park is a habitat for Eastern bluebirds, bald eagles, ducks, geese, white-tailed deer, and more. It provides facilities for camping, biking, hiking, boating, and fishing. Additionally, the park features the Ryan Observatory, which focuses on astronomy and STEM education through guided tours, educational exhibitions, and cultural events.