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Calpine files formal application for Big Blue River Wind Farm

“Wind is dead!” can officially be categorized with “Dewey wins!” in the annals of Henry County history.

Big Blue River Wind Farm, LLC, a Calpine Corporation project, filed an application Tuesday with the Henry County Planning Commission for a Commission Approved Use (CAU) permit.

Per regulations, any CAU permit has to be filed at least 30 days before the planning commission will hear it.

July 18 is the earliest scheduled date for the Henry County Planning Commission to hear the CAU permit application from Big Blue River Wind Farm, LLC.

The full CAU application, which includes 22 documents and 391 pages, is available to the public at www.henryco.net/PlanningCommBigBlue River.aspx.

According to the application, the proposed Big Blue River Wind Farm project will be “a wind-powered electric generation facility” with elements in Fall Creek, Jefferson, Prairie, Henry, Harrison and Greensboro Townships.

The proposed project will include up to 38 wind turbines and “associate necessary project infrastructure,” which includes access roads, collections lines, performance towers and a substation.

The application shows components of the project, if approved, would go on 132 parcels.

According to the application, as of Tuesday, Big Blue River Wind Farm, LLC had signed leases on 96 parcels, pending leases on six parcels, a consent to reduced setback on four parcels and a consent to permit on 26 parcels.

Maps of the proposed Big Blue River Wind Farm show the majority of the possible turbines (25) would be located in Harrison Township, with an operations and maintenance (O&M) building located west of Cadiz on Ind. 38.

The map shows two possible turbine sites in Jefferson Township, three in Prairie, three in Henry, three in Fall Creek and two in Greensboro Township.

According to the application, the company intends for the Big Blue River Wind Farm project to generate up to 132 megawatts of electricity. The energy would go to the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc., (MISO) Electric Power Market and the Pennsylvania-New Jersey-Maryland Interconnection (PJM) regional transmission operating system.

The CAU application includes five potential turbine manufacturers and models for the proposed project.

The maximum turbine height ranges from 492-500 feet, with the maximum diameter of rotors and blades measuring 194-219 feet.

Big Blue River Wind Farm, LLC also included in their CAU application an agreement to provide training to Henry County emergency services and an evacuation zone and safety plan.

Also included as part of the CAU application are a sound emissions study, a shadow flicker analysis, a transportation plan and road use agreement, an archaeological resources affidavit, a decommissioning plan and agreement, an escrow agreement and a microwave analysis.