The Shasta Environmental Alliance’s June 2021 newsletter covered a number of topics, including the Fountain Wind Project, and the Shasta County Planning Commission public hearing on Tuesday during which commissioners will decide whether a use permit will be granted for the project.
Below is the segment of the SEA newsletter that addressed the Fountain Wind Project:
The final EIR on the Fountain Wind Project is out and the hearing is scheduled at the Shasta County Planning Commission on June 22. While SEA does not accept all of the opponent’s arguments, you can find their view on their website at https://www.stopfw.com/
The wind turbines will be up to 679 feet tall, the height of a sixty-story building and will be seen from 30 miles away. This will definitely have a significant negative impact on the aesthetics of the area. The FEIR admits that it can’t be mitigated. Lassen Volcanic National Park submitted comments raising concerns about the lights from the towers affecting their Dark Sky events. The Pit River Tribe is opposed to the project, as is the Winnemem Wintu Tribe. The red lights on the Hatchet Mountain wind turbines disrupt Pit River traditional ceremonies there, as will the Fountain Wind turbines.
We do need more renewable energy; however, this is not a high wind area according to California wind maps. The amount of electricity that the proponents claim could be generated only presents a best-case scenario if all turbines are operating at peak capacity 24/7. The turbines also represent a threat to birds and bats, especially raptors, and will require clearing at least 2500 acres of vegetation.
The previous company that planned a wind farm here pulled out after several years of planning and research. Then a newly formed company took over the project and has made grandiose claims of advantages to the County. This raises the question: If an established wind farm company pulled out of the project, which can be assumed they could not turn a profit, how will a company only a few years old be able to make a profit and back up its claims of 20 years of tax benefits to the County?
The Shasta County link to the FEIR is: https://www.co.shasta.ca.us/index/drm/planning/eir/fountain-wind-project
The Shasta Environmental Alliance (SEA) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization incorporated in 2017 to fill the need for a strong, united, and organized voice to advocate for the environmental integrity of the Sacramento River Watershed. SEA is composed of various local individuals with 19 supporting organizations ranging from Wintu Audubon, Sierra Club, Trails and Bikeways Council to California Native Plant Society. SEA’s website is www.ecoshasta.org.
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