“The routes unnecessarily destroy wilderness-quality lands in Northwest Colorado and eastern Nevada, as well as greater sage grouse habitat. Readily available alternative routes could have minimized or eliminated these impacts by following highways and designated utility corridors.”
Library filed under Transmission from Nevada
BLM's preferred alternative would take the line across the agency-managed Sunrise Mountain Instant Study Area east of Las Vegas. The 10,240-acre ISA is a popular hiking destination and includes Gypsum Cave, which BLM says holds some of the earliest evidence of human inhabitance in the western United States. Running the line though Sunrise Mountain "may entail congressional legislation modifying the designation," according to the draft EIS.
The 500,000-volt line would be a direct current line that’s projected to cost about $3.5 billion. The project would help transport electricity generated from Wyoming wind farms to California, which has set a renewable target to obtain one-third of its power from renewable sources by 2020.
"To increase utility rates on Nevadans struggling to emerge from a severe economic recession would result in the imposition of an unnecessary and unfair burden on our recovery," he wrote. The bill, critics said, could have put ratepayers on the hook for $1 billion in transmission lines.
NV Energy's plan to construct a power transmission line from Ely to Las Vegas and connect it to the line that reaches north from Ely to Boulder Valley has cleared another step toward project approval. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's Ely office has released a draft supplemental environmental impact statement on the proposed One Nevada Line, also called ON Line, and is accepting public comment through Jan. 8. ...The line opens "a pathway for renewable energy currently inaccessible in northern and eastern Nevada."