The Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 and the Niagara River Water Diversion Treaty of 1950 govern the use of water from the Niagara River for any purpose, including power generation. The 1909 treaty established the International Joint Commission whose purpose is to prevent and resolve disputes relating to the use and quality of boundary waters.
As of 2006, there are only 2 active operators of hydro-electric generation facilities on the Niagara River:
- Ontario Power Generation. OPG, and its predecessors, Ontario Hydro and the Hydro-Electric Power Commission of Ontario, have played a major role in the development of the Niagara River as one of the world's greatest sources of hydro-electric power.
- Hydro One is responsible for the transmission of electricity generated at Niagara throughout Ontario.
- New York Power Authority. The NYPA is responsible for developing the hydro-electric potential of the Niagara River in New York.