Blue Ribbon Energy has been encountering major obstacles after submitting an application to build several wind turbines in Wolverine Canyon of Bingham County. This week has been no exception. Now, the company has reduced the number of wind turbines they plan to build if their proposal is accepted by the Bingham County Planning and Zoning Committee.
There are three major reasons Blue Ribbon Energy will be building 27 wind turbines rather than 40. The first reason is a requirement by the Idaho Utilities Commission stating each wind farm must be at least one mile from the next farm. The other reason stems from the wind turbines manufacture requiring ample spacing between each turbine. The last reason and most significant, is Bingham County’s ‘Draft 14’ planning and zoning ordinance.
‘Draft 14’ states wind turbines must be built away from any other property at least three times the height of the turbine, a requirement that is not in the current and active ordinance. Blue Ribbon Energy officials say they voluntarily agreed to the draft ordinance, even though it has not been adopted yet. The energy company has now reevaluated the number of wind turbines they can build in Wolverine Canyon down to 27.
“The setback distances required under ‘Draft 14’ seem to be the harshest we’ve seen, very harsh,” said Arron Jepson, co-owner of Blue Ribbon Energy.
Jepson says Bingham County will receive around $478,000 a year from the 27 wind turbines if they are built in Wolverine Canyon.
A public hearing will be held Wednesday, November 10th at the Bingham County Courthouse. The Planning and Zoning Committee will make a decision to accept or deny Blue Ribbon Energy’s proposals to develop wind turbines in Wolverine Canyon.
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