Sharon Knowlton, from the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM), met with the Carbon County Commission on Tuesday to discuss potential routes for the TransWest transmission lines project.
Knowlton, project manager for TransWest, said her office received has 60 letters opposing the project from residents in the Baggs/Dixon/Little Snake River Valley area.
Commissioner John Espy said that the people who live in that area want to make sure the transmission lines are out of their line of sight.
Knowlton said the BLM is looking at a possible route behind a natural “uplift,” so many towers would be hidden by the landscape. She knows the towns don’t want the lines to be constructed along State Route 789.
“We’re looking for the least worst spot, because there’s no good place to put transmission lines,” Knowlton said.
She said the BLM would look also at any possible visibility from the highway.
The draft environmental impact statement for the TransWest project is scheduled to be finished and released by the end of June.
TransWest is a transmission-line project headed up by Anschutz Corporation – the same company behind the wind farm – and is set to build 725 miles of extra-high voltage, direct-current power lines, 90 miles of which will be in Wyoming.
The lines would be designed to put power in at the northern end – the primary power source will be the Chokecherry wind farm – and distribute it at the southern end. Capacity for the lines would be large enough to carry the estimated 3,000 megawatts generated by the Chokecherry and Sierra Madre wind farm.
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