Library from Wyoming

Wyoming board gives key OK for Carbon County wind farm

Power Company of Wyoming has also applied to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for an eagle take permit, which would allow the company to kill a designated number of raptors each year ...In its application to the state, the company said it intends to provide $1.68 billion in its own funding to build the project. The remaining $3.11 billion will be financed through debt.  
8 Aug 2014

Wind energy companies seek balance between production, protection

Hutchins believes seasonal shutdowns or retrofitting power lines and towers are useful tools for reducing bird deaths once wind farms are up and running. The best strategy, though, is siting the turbines properly in the first place. “Unfortunately, these things are going up anywhere, including in important bird areas, and we think that’s highly problematic,” Hutchins said.
26 Jul 2014

Research helps move discussion of energy impacts on wildlife, scientist says

Even energy billed as clean can have impacts on wildlife. The U.S. Department of Justice fined Duke Energy $1 million for killing 14 golden eagles and about 150 other protected species between 2009 and 2013. The deaths all occurred on Duke Energy’s Converse County wind farms, and was the first time the Obama administration legally addressed a wind company for bird fatalities. Read more about the wind farm and eagles here.
26 Jul 2014

Storrow: DKRW, Two Elk, Wasatch and a broken DEQ

Wasatch Wind’s 80 megawatt Pioneer Park wind farm near Glenrock is the youngest of the Big Three, having first been announced in 2010. We don’t know the project’s exact price tag, but we can be sure it is no less than $190 million because that is the minimum threshold needed for the Department of Environmental Quality’s Industrial Siting Council to consider a project application.
14 Jul 2014

Groups urge feds not to allow harm to eagles at huge proposed Wyo. wind farm

The American Bird Conservancy, along with the Laramie, Wyo.-based Biodiversity Conservation Alliance, submitted a 15-page letter to the Fish and Wildlife Service expressing concerns about impacts to golden eagles if the massive Chokecherry and Sierra Madre wind project is built as proposed in southeast Wyoming. ...There’s simply too little information about eagle populations in the region to know what mitigation strategies would be most effective to protect eagles and to justify a possible eagle take permit,
14 Feb 2014

Firm seeks to harness Wyoming's wind energy for California

Wyoming residents enjoy the cheapest electricity prices in the nation, thanks to low-cost power from coal-fired plants near vast surface mines in the Powder River Basin. California, which has all but phased out coal power and has the nation's most aggressive renewable energy laws, has close to the highest prices, according to U.S. Energy Department data.
8 Feb 2014

Rocky Mountain Power applies for rules change amid dispute

Utilities are required by a law from 1978 to accept electricity generated by renewable-power projects of less than 100 megawatts. But the law comes with a hitch. Utilities are required to purchase the power only if doing so doesn’t lead to a rate increase for consumers. Current limitations in transmission capacity mean Rocky Mountain Power cannot offer Wasatch a higher price without triggering a rate increase,
3 Feb 2014

Chokecherry permit process inches along

The Chokecherry-Sierra Madre Wind Energy Project south of Rawlins is slowly moving through a bureaucratic maze of environmental impact and assessment studies. Although the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) have tentative timelines to complete their respective analysis, it is uncertain when construction will begin.
31 Jan 2014

Wasatch Wind wins key ruling for Glenrock wind project, but questions remain

Wind developers previously had to be in commercial production to qualify for the credit. The IRS issued new guidelines in the summer, saying companies only had to show work had begun. The new guidelines are untested in court, said Lay, a lawyer. “I have no doubt they [the developer] will claim to have met these requirements. Whether that claim stands up to the scrutiny of the IRS and its overseers in the Congress is another question."
27 Dec 2013

Feds discuss eagle kill by massive Wyo. wind farm

The federal agency has been working with the developer of the 1,000-turbine Chokecherry/Sierra Madre wind project for three years to make sure the turbines are placed away from areas frequented by eagles. They've been mapping nesting areas and flight corridors on the vast project area south of Rawlins in south-central Wyoming.
17 Dec 2013

In growing trend, Wyoming wind project seeks permit to kill eagles

Chokecherry-Sierra Madre is especially concerning, he said, arguing that internal concerns from BLM and Fish and Wildlife staff about bird fatalities have been ignored for political reasons. The project is one of 33 renewable energy developments authorized on public land by the Obama administration, as part of its initiative to produce 10,000 megawatts of green electricity. The project received BLM authorization despite the finding it posed a threat to golden eagles, Schroeder said.
4 Dec 2013

Guilty plea in bird deaths at wind farms a first

For the first time, the Obama administration is taking action against wind farms for killing eagles. In a settlement announced Friday, Nov. 22, Duke Energy will pay $1 million for killing 14 golden eagles over the past three years at two Wyoming wind farms. The company says it pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.
23 Nov 2013

Utility company sentenced in Wyoming for killing protected birds at wind projects

Duke_jason_thumb Duke Energy Renewables Inc., a subsidiary of Duke Energy Corp., based in Charlotte, N.C., pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Wyoming today to violating the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) in connection with the deaths of protected birds, including golden eagles, at two of the company’s wind projects in Wyoming.  This case represents the first ever criminal enforcement of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act for unpermitted avian takings at wind projects.
22 Nov 2013

Bird migration routes coincide with high wind potential in Wyoming

“Seventy-three percent of those places with good potential for wind energy development have high overlap with important migration areas,” Pocewicz says. Wind energy’s impact on bird populations, particularly migratory birds, has been a controversial subject as wind power has grown nationwide. There’s no recent data on how many birds are killed in Wyoming every year by turbines, but nationally, estimates are in the hundreds of thousands.
17 Oct 2013
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