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WNDMILL: Plan to relay wind energy via lattice towers at issue

The Competitive Renewable Energy Zone transmission lines proposed to pass through West and Central Texas have a number of ranchers and small town dwellers up in arms about the effect the 200-foot-tall lattice towers would have on the scenic Texas Hill Country. The Lower Colorado River Authority-Transmission Services Corp. proposes to construct three new, double-circuit, bundled conductor, 345-kilovolt transmission lines, primarily on double-circuit-capable lattice structures.

The Competitive Renewable Energy Zone transmission lines proposed to pass through West and Central Texas have a number of ranchers and small town dwellers up in arms about the effect the 200-foot-tall lattice towers would have on the scenic Texas Hill Country.

The Lower Colorado River Authority-Transmission Services Corp. proposes to construct three new, double-circuit, bundled conductor, 345-kilovolt transmission lines, primarily on double-circuit-capable lattice structures.

The CREZ projects - estimated to cost $4.9 billion - would transport electricity generated by renewable wind energy sources from remote areas of West Texas and the Panhandle to large cities throughout the state. The projects would boost electric reliability and help meet load growth needs, according to the LCRA newsletter.

The first CREZ transmission line would connect the existing Twin Buttes Station in northwestern Tom Green County to the proposed McCamey D Station, to be located in northwestern Schleicher County. The first transmission line may be located in portions of Tom Green, Irion and Schleicher counties.

The second CREZ transmission line would connect the proposed McCamey D... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

The Competitive Renewable Energy Zone transmission lines proposed to pass through West and Central Texas have a number of ranchers and small town dwellers up in arms about the effect the 200-foot-tall lattice towers would have on the scenic Texas Hill Country.

The Lower Colorado River Authority-Transmission Services Corp. proposes to construct three new, double-circuit, bundled conductor, 345-kilovolt transmission lines, primarily on double-circuit-capable lattice structures.

The CREZ projects - estimated to cost $4.9 billion - would transport electricity generated by renewable wind energy sources from remote areas of West Texas and the Panhandle to large cities throughout the state. The projects would boost electric reliability and help meet load growth needs, according to the LCRA newsletter.

The first CREZ transmission line would connect the existing Twin Buttes Station in northwestern Tom Green County to the proposed McCamey D Station, to be located in northwestern Schleicher County. The first transmission line may be located in portions of Tom Green, Irion and Schleicher counties.

The second CREZ transmission line would connect the proposed McCamey D Station in Schleicher County to the proposed Westwind Station, to be located in northern Kerr County or southern Gillespie County. The second line may be located in portions of Schleicher, Menard, Sutton, Kimble, Kerr and Gillespie counties.

The third CREZ transmission line would connect the proposed Westwind Station, to be located in northern Kerr County or southern Gillespie County, to the existing Kendall Station in western Kendall County. The third transmission line may be located in portions of Gillespie, Kerr and Kendall counties.

LCRA TSC initially would install one circuit on the first transmission line with provision for a second circuit to be installed in the future. LCRA TSC initially would install both circuits on the second and third transmission lines.

"The right of ways will be nearly 200 feet wide and will be cleared of trees and brush. That means 200-year-old liveoak trees will be mowed down," said Walter W. Pfluger, a Kimble County rancher and San Angelo attorney. "The Lower Colorado River Authority power lines will cut Kimble County diagonally from the northwest to the southeast for about 54 miles."

Pfluger said rural residents in Kimble County have formed the Clearview Alliance to, at a minimum, seek monopoles instead of lattice towers.

Kimble County Judge Andy Murr and the Commissioners Court want LCRA to consider running the lines beside Interstate 10 from Sonora to Comfort or use existing utility easements, and also use single-pole structures near towns instead of lattice towers.

A resolution by Kimble County commissioners is urging the LCRA to route the lines in existing utility easements north of Kimble County in Menard, Mason and Gillespie counties.

In a story published in the San Antonio Express-News, Bill Neiman of the Clearview Alliance said the project would create a massive economic impact for Junction, the Kimble County seat.

Neiman said one of the many routes proposed by the LCRA crosses the 260-acre parcel on the North Llano River where his family lives and where they operate the Native American Seed Farm and an ecotourism business.

"People come to the Hill Country for refuge from the cities," he said. "Who'd want to come to a scenic location that has 20-story lattice towers with power lines that are emitting electromagnetic fields?"

More than 1,900 people from San Angelo, Christoval, Junction, Harper, Comfort, Kerrville, Fredericksburg, Llano, Burnet and Lampasas attended 10 LCRA briefings in May, according to the Express-News. Property owners pored over maps depicting the possible power grid, hoping to be spared.

According to the LCRA web site, unlike transmission lines constructed by private companies, LCRA TSC builds transmission lines at the direction of the Public Utility Commission of Texas.

No exact routes have been determined for any of the new transmission lines. The PUC ultimately will decide which entity will build each CREZ project.

For the six substations LCRA TSC proposes to build or expand, two have been identified as requiring new land. These include the Gillespie (near Fredericksburg) and McCamey B (near McCamey) substations.

At this time, no new land requirements have been identified for the North McCamey, Twin Buttes (west of San Angelo) and Divide (near Highway 87 in southeast Coke County) as existing substations of sufficient size to allow for the additional facilities.

The Kendall substation, off Interstate 10 near Comfort, would not require the acquisition of new land.


Source: http://www.gosanangelo.com/...

JUL 18 2009
https://www.windaction.org/posts/21287-wndmill-plan-to-relay-wind-energy-via-lattice-towers-at-issue
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