The $3 billion, 750 turbine wind project in Tehachapi, Calif., would be the largest in the United States if it’s approved by state regulators.
Alta Wind Energy’s proposed project, in partnership with Oak Creek Energy Systems, Inc. would cover 50 square miles and generate possibly 1,500 megawatts, the Californian reported. The current largest U.S. wind project generates about 750 megawatts, half of Alta’s proposed project.
“It’s a nice boost to the eastern Kern County economy,” said Hal Romanowitz, president and chief executive office of Oak Creek Energy. “The county has been dependent on oil for a long time. The wind energy generated in the future will help to balance out energy resources as oil declines.”
Southern California Edison has agreed to purchase electricity from the project for 20 years though there are still some concerns over the project like Avian worries about birds flying into turbines and the possibility of accelerated erosion.
“We give conditional approval to any wind project,” said Georgette Theotig, an executive member of the Kern-Kaweah chapter of the Sierra Club. “We support any technology that doesn’t pollute the air or use limited natural resources. But like any other industry, it needs to be monitored for environmental impacts.”
22 February 2007