in News Departments > New & Noteworthy
print the content item

NaturEner USA LLC, a San Francisco-based wind energy development company, and Montana Audubon are making major changes to the Rim Rock Wind Farm, located near Kevin, Mont., in order to avoid impacts on birds and their habitat.

The 189 MW Rim Rock Wind Farm is currently under construction on private lands near Kevin Rim, an area known to harbor up to 60 active nests of 10 raptors species in a given year. At the urging of Montana Audubon, NaturEner voluntarily agreed to relocate each of 25 wind turbines to provide a buffer of approximately half a mile from historic and active raptor nests, the company explains.

These changes were made after the project design had been finalized, the financing had been completed and the construction had begun.

As the project was being developed, Montana Audubon voiced concerns over whether the turbine locations as designed would be sufficiently distant from historic raptor nests to limit the potential for displacement and/or disturbance of one of the most active raptor nesting areas in Montana.

Although the land-based wind energy guidelines developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) did not specify a setback distance, NaturEner was aware of the concerns and consulted with both the FWS and Montana Audubon in an effort to find common ground regarding the planned turbine placement, NaturEner explains. After numerous meetings, the final design plan was changed.

In addition, NaturEner and Montana Audubon have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the following fundamental objectives: regional economic development, an environmentally sustainable clean energy project, and the preservation of wildlife and its habitat.

The MOU also provides the structure for cooperation and understanding between Rim Rock and Montana Audubon for additional wildlife studies and an opportunity to coordinate regional issues of mutual interest relating to wind energy development.

Preliminary construction work on the wind farm began in August 2011 and is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year. The project will be interconnected with the Montana-Alberta Tie Line.



Trachte Inc._id1770
Latest Top Stories

Quebec Government Postpones Wind Power RFP; No New Date Scheduled

The request for proposals (RFP) is part of an overall 800 MW wind power tranche that will serve as a bridge to the next phase in the province's energy future.


Setting The Record Straight: How Many Birds Do Wind Turbines Really Kill?

Several peer-reviewed studies are more or less in agreement with avian mortality rates caused by wind turbines. However, one study, which is wildly off from the others, is most often cited in the media. Why?


Six Takeaways From The IRS' Start Of Construction Guidance: What You Need To Know

The IRS recently issued guidance to wind developers to further spell out what "start of construction" means. Will you be covered?


Eagle Take Permits For Wind Farms - Will They Fly?

Now that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has issued the first permit allowing the legal take of eagles, can wind developers expect more certainty in the agency's application process?


Despite 2013 Challenges, U.S. Wind Power Reaches All-Time Low Price

In a new report, the U.S. Department of Energy details the highs and lows of the country's wind industry last year, and the agency maintains that the U.S. sector remains strong.

Canwea_id1984
Renewable NRG_id1934
Tower Conference_id1965
UnitedEquip_id1995