A company called Power Company of Wyoming LLC that is owned by the billionaire entertainment and pro sports magnate Philip Anschutz, will build the largest wind farm in the U.S. to serve utilities in California.
The $5 billion wind project will be built in Wyoming, which is well-known for the ties with the fossil fuel sector due its coal mines and oil fields.
The distance of 700 miles between Wyoming and California is quite large, so another company owned by Philip Anschutz (TransWest Express LLC) will build a $3 billion project for transmission lines that will deliver the power produced by the wind farm.
About 5,700 miles of transmission lines are under development today to deliver renewable energy produced in other U.S. states to California.
No new wind farms in California?
California must receive renewable energy from other U.S. states instead of producing its own clean energy due to the fact that green energy advocates and state officials are ready to produce wind power, but California conservationists are opposing the idea of building any new wind farm in the state.
When two teams are arguing on a subject, the third one will always benefit from the conflict of the two, and in this case we are talking about the companies that are building transmission lines to deliver clean electricity to California from other U.S. states.
In fact, the future of the Californian wind farms was heavily affected when in 2016, regulators have completed an eight-year long process, designed in part to identify new locations for future renewable energy projects in the state.
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the state and federal wildlife agencies, and the California Energy Commission, have tried in 2016 to balance the development of the renewable energy with the preservation of natural habitats in the state such as Native American tribal lands, and the critical habitats for threatened species like the desert tortoise and the Mohave ground squirrel.
Solar and wind developers have argued last year (2016) that the plan released by the regulators is unfairly favoring the land conservation over the green energy projects, which are so needed in California to get rid of the fossil fuels and to tackle climate change.
State estimates say that California needs about 15 GW of wind power to cover half of its energy demand from renewable energy sources by the year 2030, but the California Wind Energy Association considers that only about 2 GW of additional wind power can be produced in the state.
Along with a broad development of the renewable energy sources, the state is trying to promote electric vehicles as a measure to improve the quality of the air in the state.
The growth of the wind power generation capacity in the U.S. is mostly produced by the fact that the costs of wind power generation dropped about 66% in the last seven years.
California already has its own wind farms located in areas that are suited for them, and the fact that the largest wind farm in the U.S. will be built in Wyoming will ensure higher winds and lower construction costs, which means an improved efficiency.
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