Environmental groups on Tuesday lost a bid to stop the large North Sky River and Jawbone wind energy projects in the mountains northwest of Mojave.
Kern County Superior Court Judge William Palmer ruled that the Board of Supervisors did not violate the California Environmental Quality Act when it approved the two projects in September 2011, but instead “complied with both the letter of the law and the spirit of CEQA.”
The Sierra Club, Defenders of Wildlife and the Center for Biological Diversity sued the county after supervisors approved the 13,535-acre, 300 megawatt wind energy projects.
They argued that the county had violated state environmental laws because the project would have significant negative impacts on birds and bats and the county had not done an adequate job of analyzing those impacts and finding ways to reduce them.
Deputy County Counsel Charles Collins said he expects the decision to be appealed.
Babak Naficy, an attorney for the environmental groups, could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday evening.
Opponents of the project told supervisors in 2011 that their quality of life would be compromised by the massive turbines and their spinning blades.
And environmental groups pointed to the high mortality rates for golden eagles at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s Pine Tree wind project adjacent to North Sky to indicate that the spinning blade of turbines would kill eagles and California condors at North Sky.
Environmental groups also have sued the federal government over the project.
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