Library filed under General from Wyoming
To prepare for a planning review of the resource management plans that guide wind energy and other development on public lands, the Bureau of Land Management's Rock Springs and Rawlins field offices are hosting a series of open houses to collect information for a "visual inventory" of southern Wyoming.
A proposed wind farm on White Mountain has sparked a feverish debate throughout Sweetwater County. Next month local residents will get another chance to sound off on the issue. Residents will also be able to learn more about the Obstacle Collision Avoidance System (OCAS).
A BP Alternative Energy official says the company is still hoping to proceed with construction of a wind farm in Wyoming County later this year. ...In March 2009, BP officials announced they were putting the project on hold, citing financial problems with other projects.
Some of Rocky Mountain Power's wind farms didn't produce wind energy last year at the same rate the company projected before construction, according to numbers provided during the utility's Wyoming rate case. The capacity factor question came up during Wyoming Public Service Commission hearings over the utility's proposed rate hike. Capacity factor is the amount of energy a wind farm produces relative to the amount it could produce if the wind blew all the time.
Why the rush for wind energy farms? Many will say yes the wind is free, so go for it. True the wind is free, but when the wind does not blow no electrical power is made. When this happens somewhere on the electrical grid coal-fired boilers will pick up the load. If we over-balance the electrical load on the grid with too much or too many wind turbines we may not be able to balance the electrical grid system.
Wyoming will have more authority over the siting and development of wind farms and the state will begin taxing wind energy production under bills that Gov. Dave Freudenthal signed into law on Friday. The $1 per megawatt hour tax on wind energy generated in the state goes into effect in 2012. The wind industry fought the tax bill unsuccessfully this session.
At a meeting Tuesday, Sweetwater County Commissioner Randy Walker may very well have echoed the feelings many local residents have about Teton Winds, LLC, proposed wind farm on White Mountain. "I don't think most people are against wind farms in general," Walker said. " It's just where this one is proposed. It's location, location, location."
Dr. Jason A. Lillegraven aimed to have a day in court to protest PacifiCorp's Dunlap Ranch wind energy project. He's not going to get it. Wade Waldrip, Carbon County District Court judge, ruled to dismiss Lillegraven's petition for judicial review in a decision letter filed Monday in District Court.
A Utah company has submitted a permit application to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to build a commercial wind farm on federal land in western Natrona County, the agency's Casper field manager said. "This is the first one we're permitting," Joe Meyer told the Natrona County commissioners at a work session last week.
Commercial wind farms can extend over thousands of acres, often on federal land, and require some new skills for permitting, So the Renewable Energy Coordination Office of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management was created ...to smooth the permitting process for wind, solar and other renewable energy sources.
The councilors voted to send a letter of support for the Hermosa West Wind Energy project to the Western Area Power Administrator (WAPA), an agency of the U.S. Department of Energy, at a regular meeting Tuesday. The letter mentions potential impacts to the property owners' view sheds but expresses support for the potential economic benefits of the project.
A House committee has advanced a bill to give counties permitting authority over wind farms and set minimum development standards for wind projects. The Minerals Committee approved the measure Friday morning and sent it to the full House.
Wyoming wildlife and landowner advocates have praised Gov. Dave Freudenthal's call for a one-year moratorium of eminent domain powers for companies wanting to build wind farm "collector" lines. The idea of the moratorium is to give lawmakers time to consider whether to make permanent limitations of eminent domain powers in regard to wind energy. But some landowners say they're not satisfied with limiting the review to just wind farms.
Last week, Gov. Dave Freudenthal said he would ask the Legislature to impose a one-year suspension of eminent domain powers to merchant companies wanting to connect wind turbines to the electrical grid. He said a time-out is needed to contemplate the use of eminent domain, but only the realm of "collector" lines for wind energy. In Wyoming, a private entity can take someone else's private property for its own economic gain.
Utah-based Wasatch Wind announced today it has submitted a revised application to drop about 4,200 acres of state trust lands from its proposed wind energy project in the Northern Laramie Range in Converse County. Now excluded from the project is the Duncan Ranch, which the state purchased several years ago. Also excluded are state lands leased by the Pinetree Cattle Co.
A proposed wind farm on White Mountain in Sweetwater County could displace some wildlife and place turbines within sight of Rock Springs, but would also boost the local economy, according to an environmental study. The Bureau of Land Management released its environmental assessment this week of the proposed White Mountain Wind Energy Project.
But by January, the Reno Junction Wind Farm, which has had no zoning regulations to contend with in Campbell County and was thought profitable with no tax, could be facing both. Freudenthal proposed a $3 excise tax on wind energy production Monday. The tax would have a provision to send 40 percent of the revenues to local governments and 60 percent to the state general fund.
It appears the True family occupies both sides of the wind energy debate in Converse County. According to a lease filed in Converse County, the brother of Diemer True - a leading advocate against wind development in southern Converse County - has signed the largest private land-use agreement with Utah-based Wasatch Wind, Inc. to date. David True signed the agreement for True Ranches, LLC.
Residents are divided about a proposal to build up to 200 wind turbines in southern Albany County. The proposed Hermosa West Wind Energy Project would be located on 11,000 acres of private and state land near Tie Siding on the western side of U.S. Highway 287, running from Sportsman Lake Road to the Wyoming-Colorado border.
Crowds filled the Converse County Courthouse's inauspicious basement meeting room and spilled out down the hallway. As TV news cameras rolled in the corner, infants and old-timers alike listened intently - sometimes with solemn contemplation and other times with heart-felt applause - as concerned citizens used fiery passion and vivid imagery to relate tales of pristine natural beauty and struggles to save family ranches.