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Contract for North Carolina wind-military maps signed

An engineering company will be paid $110,000 in state money for a study of the impacts of wind energy projects on military operations.

The website Southeast Energy News reported on the contract between the company AECOM and legislative staff members on Nov. 7; it was finalized shortly after a Nov. 1 deadline in the law requiring Legislative Services Officer Paul Coble to award the contract.

The firm’s proposal notes that it has strong relationships with the military as a result of its previous work.

House Bill 589, passed earlier this year, creates a moratorium on wind development and calls for the creation of maps and data to help legislators determine “where energy infrastructure and development poses a threat to, encroaches upon, or otherwise reduces (military) operations, training capabilities, or readiness.”

The law requires the report to be submitted to Coble by May 31.

Chuck Hefren, the legislative staffer who’s overseeing the contract, told Southeast Energy News that the final report will contain “only maps – no analysis, no recommendations.”