Public Comment Winding Down On Energy Transmission Corridors

By  KJZZ News
May 19, 2014

A plan for energy transmission corridors across the West is being revised because of a court order and the public has just one week left to comment on the revisions. The changes could involve deleting routes and establishing new ones.

Alex Daue of the Wilderness Society says the revised corridors that have been proposed do a better job of avoiding environmentally sensitive areas and provide better access to areas with potential for wind and solar power.

"Well-designed energy corridors can help us meet our clean energy needs while protecting wild lands and wildlife habitats,” Daue said. “The original corridors did not do that. There were corridors in inappropriate locations, and there were corridors that did not provide access to renewable energy, which is where we need to head as a country.”

Daue says the original corridors focused on transmitting power from plants that burn fossil fuels. He says Arizona has a number of solar energy zones and wind farms that also need access to well-placed transmission lines.

Daue says decisions to be made soon by the Bureau of Land Management and National Forest Service, will shape the future of the electrical grid in the West for decades.