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MEDIA ADVISORY: Public invited to comment on scope of environmental impact statement for Horse Heaven Wind Farm project

Docket number: EF-210011

 

LACEY, Wash. - The Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC) is requesting public comments on the scope of environmental impacts they should consider in their review of the proposed Horse Heaven Wind Farm project in Benton County.

EFSEC invites agencies, affected tribes, and members of the public to comment on the scope of the environmental impact statement, a tool for identifying and analyzing probable adverse environmental impacts and reasonable alternatives. EFSEC requests comments on alternatives, mitigation measures, probable significant adverse impacts, and licenses or other approvals that the project may require.

EFSEC has identified the following environmental elements for detailed analysis in the environmental impact statement:

  • Wildlife/habitat
  • Visual/aesthetics
  • Land use

Environmental elements which require additional information before determining the level of analysis in the environmental impact statement include:

  • Air
  • Water (wetlands, water quality, and water resources)
  • Plants
  • Energy and natural resources
  • Environmental health
  • Noise
  • Light and glare
  • Historic resources
  • Cultural resources

WHAT:

Public comment period

WHO:

Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council

WHEN and WHERE

May 11 through June 10.

Written comments can be submitted on EFSEC’s website, or mailed to:

Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council
621 Woodland Square Loop SE
Lacey, WA 98504-3172

Mailed comments must be postmarked by June 10.

EFSEC prepares the environmental impact statement under the State Environmental Policy Act, as part of the application review process. EFSEC will determine the scope of the statement once the public comment period closes on June 10.

BACKGROUND

On Feb. 8, EFSEC received an application for a site certification from Horse Heaven Wind Farm, LLC proposing the construction and operation of the Horse Heaven Wind Farm project in Benton County. The applicant proposes the construction of a renewable energy generation facility that combines wind and solar facilities, and battery energy storage systems, with an energy generating capacity of up to 1,150 megawatts. The applicant proposes that if approved, commercial operation of the first phase built would begin by the end of 2023. 

The applicant is requesting permitting authorization for up to 244 turbine locations and two solar arrays to convert energy from the wind and sun into electric power and then deliver that power to the electric power grid. 

On March 30, EFSEC held a public informational meeting and a land use hearing. Recordings of both meetings are available on EFSEC’s Horse Heaven page.

EFSEC is the state agency charged with providing one-stop permitting for certain types of major energy projects in Washington. EFSEC specifies the conditions of construction and operation. The council also manages an environmental and safety oversight program of facility and site operations. 

EFSEC is an independent council that is administratively housed at the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission. 

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Editor’s note: Anyone interested in following this project can join the dedicated email list, and information is available on EFSEC’s website

Topic(s)
Consumer
Energy