State Approves Largest US Windfarm

Aug 8, 2014

The state Industrial Siting Commission gave the Power Company of Wyoming its blessing Wednesday to move ahead with plans to build the largest on-shore wind farm in the United States.

A thousand wind turbines would be erected in Carbon County if the Chokecherry-Sierra Madre wind farm is built, covering about 2,000 acres of private and public lands. The turbines would produce enough power for a million homes.

But Kara Choquette, with the Power Company of Wyoming, said none of that power will be used in the state.

“We’re very blessed as a state with a lot of energy resources but there just isn’t demand locally for all of this power. So much like Wyoming ships coal out of state and natural gas out of state via pipeline, this power is intended to be sold to customers in other states,” said Choquette.

States like Nevada, Arizona, and California. Still, Choquette said Wyoming will see economic benefits from the project.

“Those include about 114 full time jobs as well as literally hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenues,” she said.

Because of its wind resource, access to transmission lines, and proximity to interstates and railroads, Choquette described Carbon County as an ideal location for a farm.

The estimated cost of the project is 5 billion dollars. Construction on the first 500 wind turbines is slated to start later this years, if the project gets federal approvals.