Palm Springs City Councilwoman Ginny Foat is ready to do battle ““ with windmills.
She has asked City Manager David H. Ready to prepare a Resolution of Opposition to stop 40, 372-foot-tall wind turbines from being built north of Palm Springs. The City Council is expected to consider the Resolution of Opposition at its first meeting in January.
Foat said she has been talking with residents in the unincorporated area ““ commonly known as the Snow Creek Neighborhood ““ and is concerned that the proposed windmills are “totally going to destroy that area.”
“I certainly think it’s in our sphere of influence,” Foat said. “So, we should bring forth some sort of either a resolution to forward on to the Board of Supervisors or something of that sort so that we can make our feelings known about the … skyscraper things that are proposed for the Snow Creek area.”
Ready said the proposed windmills would affect Palm Springs; “view corridor,” which is critical to both residents and tourists arriving in Palm Springs from the north.
The Desert Hot Springs City Council is already on record, with a 4-1 vote, opposing the windmills from being built just west of Desert Hot Springs near Pierson Boulevard. The council approved a Resolution of Opposition, which has no binding power but asks the Riverside County Planning Commission to deny a variance request from PPM Energy of Portland, Ore., to build the windmills.
Each of the proposed windmills is expected to generate 1 megawatt per hour of operation. That’s enough energy to power 200 to 500 average homes for one hour. The power generated would be sent into a regional power grid that could send the energy nearly anywhere in the western United States.
The Palm Springs City Council has historically opposed such projects. The City Council in July 1999 opposed two windmill projects, clearly sending the message that electricity-producing windmills should not further proliferate the ridges and valleys of Palm Springs’ entryway.
Former Mayor Will Kleindienst said at the time that the turbines already occupy too many ridges.
That was seven years ago. There is a new mayor ““ and new City Council ““ on deck. Whether they will follow in the path of their predecessors remains to be seen.
Written by Cindy Uken
Wednesday, 27 December 2006
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