Some Idaho and Wyoming residents and environmental groups are expressing opposition to a proposed 1,100-mile long high-voltage power line designed to transmit 3,000 megawatts of mostly wind-generated electricity to fast-growing areas in the West.
The Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management is overseeing the project because most of the power line traverses federal land in Idaho and Wyoming. Officials at BLM are currently sifting through 2,600 public comments on the project.
Among the many issues that have been raised by residents and environmental groups are concerns about the power line’s effect on the habitat of the imperiled sage grouse. Residents and environmental groups have also expressed concern about the long power line disrupting wild and undeveloped land, infringing on private property rights, negatively impacting prime farmland, and destroying spectacular, pristine vistas.
The Gateway West Transmission Line Project would run from Glenrock, Wyoming to approximately 30 miles south of Boise, Idaho. Proposed by two utilities, Rocky Mountain Power and Idaho Power, the project has been enthusiastically embraced by the Obama administration as a means of delivering wind power to metropolitan regions. If everything goes as scheduled, the project, which would be the first large-scale power line built during the past three decades, will be completed in 2018. MORE …