Notre Dame plans to use South Bend dam for electricity

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP): The University of Notre Dame is working on plans to generate electricity for the campus from a downtown South Bend dam.

A memorandum of understanding with the city calls for Notre Dame to pay for construction of the dam along the St. Joseph River and run transmission lines to campus.

City Public Works director Eric Horvath tells the South Bend Tribune that the city has had federal approval for the hydroelectric facility since 1984 but never built it.

Notre Dame hopes to start construction next spring, with electricity generation starting in 2019 to meet 7 percent of current campus electrical needs. The university is aiming to cut its carbon footprint by more than half in the next 15 years and stop burning coal in its on-campus power plant.

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