Garfield County joined the wind energy rush Monday when Puget Sound Energy and Renewable Energy Systems filed a conditional use permit application to install up to 440 wind turbines on 51,696 acres. The turbines will produce up to 800 megawatts of electricity.
The project will be called the Lower Snake River Wind Energy Project, and will include 250 turbines in Columbia County capable of producing up to 450 megawatts.
Final energy capacity and turbine layouts will be determined through state and county processes and evaluation of available wind resources and environmental impacts, according to a press release from PSE.
The project will be built in phases, with construction on support infrastructure expected to begin in 2010.
The existing wind facilities in Columbia County include 204 wind turbines and a capacity of 367 megawatts. During construction, the projects provided approximately 170 full-time jobs. Post construction, 39 full-time permanent jobs exist. The Columbia County projects are called Hopkins Ridge and Marengo I and II. The projects generate approximately $1.3 million in tax revenues, according to the press release.
PSE and RES anticipate filing a conditional use permit application in Columbia County for the project later.