A Nevada Wind Farm is a Cautionary Tale for Idaho
It’s a story about an out-of-control project. Last week I was roaring along Route 50 in Nevada when I passed through a narrow valley between mountains. There’s a massive windfarm marring the landscape. I took some pictures and later facetiously posted them to Facebook with the caption, coming to a state near you! I started racking up comments on the post, including from some of the opponents of wind power in Idaho.
One left the following reply:
This project was done from 2010 to 2012. The BLM didn’t even have an EIS done and the grazers were not mitigated. Several tribes and WWP took legal action against the BLM and won because the FLPMA and NEPA were not followed. They won and were paid by Equal Access to Justice. Then the taxpayers paid a subsidy that helped the company build the Wind Farm, plus the taxpayers paid again to cover legal action for a global investment company in Canada. I may have oversimplified.
I think the Bureau of Land Management has gotten better at public relations. This is why I would argue the agency has made numerous appointments for public comment.
There are a few other things that have transpired over the last decade that I believe could kill the three projects proposed for the Magic Valley.
The Supreme Court ruling against the Environmental Protection Agency has taken the rule by decree away from three and four-letter agencies.
Second, public opinion is much more organized, especially in opposition.
Third, our congressional delegation appears opposed to the green movement.
Someone told me this week that the final call on the proposal will be made by Governor Brad Little. And remember, the pinwheels planned for southern Idaho would dwarf anything currently in existence.