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Naval Air Station Corpus Christi prefers alternate wind farm site

CORPUS CHRISTI – A wind energy company’s alternate location for developing a wind farm would be better for Naval Air Station Corpus Christi’s operations, a base spokesman said.

Baryonyx Corp. Inc., has applied for a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to install 200 wind turbines each in three areas off the South Texas coast, including in a 26,200-acre lease east of Mustang Island.

The company also leased a 45,000-acre area south of Corpus Christi and east of Baffin Bay if area military installations objected to the Mustang Island site. because wind turbines can cause radar problems such as false returns.

Naval Air Station Corpus Christi conducted its own preliminary analysis of the sites and gave comments to Baryonyx and the Texas General Land Office, Bob Torres, the station’s public affairs officer, said in an email.

“Upon preliminary analysis, the alternate site appears to be the most compatible with feasibility, safety, health, welfare and mission requirements,” Torres said.

Torres commended Baryonyx for seeking the Navy’s input on their development plans.

Baryonyx’s application with the Corps of Engineers is accompanied by a public comment period.

Torres said any concerns about the wind farm’s impacts would be handled between the Corps of Engineers, Baryonyx and Corpus Christi International Airport, where regional radar is based.

Mark Leyland, Baryonyx’s senior vice president of offshore wind projects, said Friday the Corps of Engineers permit is an early step in the process.

Even if the permit was issued, Baryonyx still would need further authorization from the agency when deciding which type of turbine the company will use and how best to build the electrical grid, Leyland said.