Wyoming Landowners: Slow down wind energy

These landowners realized that proposed wind energy is a lot more than a few scenic wind turbines tucked nicely away in an unimportant gully or flat-

Laramine Range Landowners: Slow down wind energy. By Dustin Bleizeffer. Casper Star-Tribune energy reporter

Unlike most of Idaho and Utah, they do live in a truly high quality wind energy zone.

Plans are for

1.1,150-mile-transmission line with a 350-foot-wide corridor from Glenrock to Medicine Bow, WY and then all the way to Boise, Idaho.

2. Thousands of giant wind turbines served by hundreds, maybe thousands, of miles of new roads, many in steep terrain.

Here is a link to a map showing the wind resources of the United States. Blue is the highest quality, and you can see the Laramie Range has a lot of blue and the next highest, red.



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  1. matt bullard Avatar
    matt bullard

    There are several coalitions of landowners in Wyoming that have formed cooperative groups to explore wind energy on their private land in a collective manner. One of the interesting offshoots of these groups is that they recognize that the impact of wind turbines does not end on their property line, so they are attempting to provide some of the benefits/revenue of proposed wind farms to adjacent landowners who may not end up with turbines but who fall with the view-shed of the farm. This may not work on all cases, but it is an innovative idea.

    I listened to T. Boone Pickens speak last week, and his standard joke about a news outfit tailing him around Sweetwater Texas trying to find someone in that small town opposed to wind may apply here. The reporter was having a hard time finding someone who was against the turbines until someone finally pointed to a cowboy-type guy. Reporter asks cowboy if he knows anyone opposed to the wind farms. Cowboy answers, “Yes.” Reporter asks who is opposed. Cowboy answers, “The guy without any turbines.”

  2. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Whether they own land with a turbine or not, the landowners in the Laramie Range will make a good test case because the map shows this to be the largest high quality, on-shore wind area in the United States. Wind power generation is coming.

  3. dc Avatar

    Wouldn’t it be easier to develop the highway and road corridors that exist throughout the west into wind and solar networks? The logic includes the fact that rights of way are already established plus the roads are already in place for installation and maintenance of equipment. Why build new roads? Why develop pristine areas? Just start developing existing roadsides into solar and wind sites. Wouldn’t it feel good to see that as you drive in the western U.S.A.?

  4. Nate Hobbs Avatar

    wouldn’t it be easier to just reduce our electric consumption, throw away incandescent bulbs and replace them with CFL’s and LED lighting, unplug phantom power sucking devices and adjust our thermostat a little cooler in the winter and warmer in the summer?

    Its such a waste to build all of these turbines when we just need to remember to turn out the lights behind us…


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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