Sage grouse suspends Horizon wind farm

Cheyenne, WY – Horizon Wind Energy has suspended development of the Simpson Ridge wind farm in Carbon County because of Wyoming's position on protecting key sage grouse habitat.

Project manager Nate Sandvig said Friday that Houston-based Horizon is not scrapping the project, but is placing it on hold indefinitely.

He says Horizon made the decision last week as it neared time to submit a permit application to the state's Industrial Siting Council. The council has permitting authority over industrial projects with construction costs of $173 million or more.

Wyoming has taken a hard-line stance against wind development in areas identified as core grouse habitat. The state is trying to stave off federal protections for the bird.