FARMINGTON – State land regulators will take up TransCanada’s amended application to expand its Kibby wind energy development in northern Franklin County on Wednesday, Dec. 1, in Bangor.
TransCanada Maine Wind Development Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of TransCanada Corp. in Canada, wants to add 11 more turbines to the 44 on Kibby Mountain and Kibby Range in Kibby and Skinner townships, near the Canadian border.
The Maine Land Use Regulation Commission is scheduled to make a decision Wednesday at its meeting between 1:30 and 3 p.m. at Spectacular Event Center Maine, 395 Griffin Road, Interstate 95, Exit No. 184 in Bangor.
The additional turbines would be installed on the adjacent Sisk Mountain ridgeline, a 3,300-foot mountain in Kibby and Chain of Ponds townships.
Initially, the expansion called for 15 turbines but after LURC requested that its staff draw up a denial, TransCanada revamped its proposal dropping four turbines planned for the southern most part of the ridgeline.
According to documents filed with the state agency, the capital cost of the expansion would be $92 million.
The existing project was previously estimated at $320 million.
The 11 new turbines, if approved, would each be capable of generating 3 megawatts.
The total height of each tower, including blades, is about 410 feet. Each blade is 144 feet long and the tower is 250 feet tall.
Friends of Boundary Mountains remain opposed to the project with Appalachian Mountain Club, Natural Resource Council of Maine and Maine Audubon partially opposed, according to documents filed with LURC. The latter three organizations support the eight northernmost turbines but not the other three.
The town of Eustis, Franklin County Commission and the Greater Franklin Development Corp. in Farmington all favor the proposal.
Economic benefits of the project, if approved, include property taxes estimated at $400,000 a year, state income tax revenue of approximately $13 million over a 25-year period, and revenue of $33,000 per year for the town of Eustis, according to TransCanada’s documents.
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