By Editors of Power Engineering
The Power Company of Wyoming has been granted permission for the construction of a wind project in the state that could grow as large as 1,000 turbines with a capacity of 3 GW.
The Bureau of Land Management approved the first phase of the Chokecherry Sierra Madre Energy Project, which consists of 500 turbines with a capacity of 1.5 GW, the Casper Star-Tribune reported. Half of the 220,000-acre site is on federal land, while the rest is on public and private land.
Additionally, the Fish and Wildlife Service has granted an eagle take permit at the site, which will allow Chokecherry an estimated 10-14 eagle kills per year without penalty.
Plans for the development have slowly unfolded over the last decade as federal agencies investigated the environmental impacts of the farm.
The approval comes as the Wyoming state legislature is debating a bill that would increase taxes on wind generation from $1 to $5 per kw/h. Other lawmakers are also considering a bill that would penalize utilities for using wind or solar energy to provide Wyoming customers with electricity, though Chokecherry would not be affected by that bill as Power Company of Wyoming plans to transmit that electricity out of state.