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The New Colgate Powerhouse
is located on the Yuba River
five miles southwest of the Bullards Bar Dam
, rather than at the base of the dam, where most hydroelectric plants are located. The New Colgate Tunnel (14 feet in diameter) carries the water from the dam to the powerhouse. This increases the water pressure, which allows the plant to produce more electricity. The dam's two Pelton wheels
are the largest ever built and have a combined capacity of 315 megawatts. Some water is released at the base of the dam so that the streambed is not completely dried out upstream. This water powers the 150-kilowatt Fish Release Powerhouse
The New Colgate Powerhouse is owned by the Yuba County Water Agency.