Moving Utility Lines Could Cost Millions

KSCB News - May 16, 2011 10:38 am

Protecting the habitat of about 140 lesser prairie chickens in western Kansas could cost utility customers in several states lots of money.

The Kansas Corporation Commission will take testimony Monday on a proposal to move the path of a wind energy power line out of the birds’ habitat southeast of Dodge City.

One opponent of the move says it would cost an estimated $567 million, and that cost would eventually be paid by utility customers in several states including Kansas and Missouri.

Westar and the Kansas wildlife agency have filed written testimony with the KCC supporting the revised route.

Chermac Energy, an Oklahoma wind energy developer,said the proposed new route would interfere with the migration of the whooping crane, an endangered species.


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