Buckeye Wind goes to bat to protect the endangered Indiana bat

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is taking public comment until May 20 on a Final Habitat Conservation Plan and Environmental Impact Statement for 250-MW Buckeye Wind Power Project in Ohio.

“The permit applicant, Buckeye Wind LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of EverPower Wind Holdings, Inc., proposes to construct a commercial wind energy facility in Champaign County, Ohio (Project),” said the final EIS. “The Project would occur within an approximately 32,395 ha (80,051 ac) area, consist of 100 turbines and associated access roads and infrastructure, and would generate up to 250 MW of electricity.”

The project has the potential to generate about 657,000 MWh of electricity annually with zero emissions. The kind of turbine to be used hasn’t been selected yet, said the final EIS.

The project would be constructed in a location that supports the federally endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis). Buckeye Wind has developed a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) to ensure that impacts to the federally listed Indiana bat are adequately minimized and mitigated. The USFWS received an application for an Incidental Take Permit (ITP) from Buckeye Wind for the project in February 2012.

The project’s electrical system would consist of a maximum 70.5-mile-long system of 34.5-kV cables that would collect power from each wind turbine and connect to a new substation. No more than 35.3 miles of lines would be built above ground on rebuilt poles in existing public road right-of ways. No more than 35.2 miles of the 34.5-kV interconnects would be buried underground parallel to project access roads. The substation would transfer the power from the collector cables to existing transmission lines and the regional power grid. The substation would be located near the intersection of Pisgah Road and Route 56 in the Town of Union. The substation would step up voltage from 34.5 kV to 138 kV to allow connection with an existing transmission line.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.