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    PSC approves Baron Winds filings


    December 1, 2022 - Livingston County News

     

      The New York State Public Service Commission recently approved compliance filings for four major winds farms in upstate New York, including on in Steuben County.

      The farms include Baron Winds, a 242-megawatt wind farm proposed in the towns of Cohocton, Dansville, Fremont and Wayland in Steuben County.

      The Nov. 17 approval of the compliance filings was needed before the projects could start certain construction-related activities or become operational, according to the state Public Service Commission.

      Baron Winds' compliance relates to emergency procedures, site security, turbine lighting, maps and site plans, bat curtailment, eagle mitigation, avian and bat-monitoring and adaptive management plans. The compliance filings also relate to installation of aircraft detection lighting systems, according to the PSC.

      In September, the PSC approved compliance filings involving engineering, environmental planning, and cultural resources mitigation for Baron Winds.

      Baron Winds will be constructed and operated by a subsidiary of the German energy company, innogy. It will include up to 68 wind turbines.

      The turbines will be 492 feet tall and will be spread out over acres of privately-owned agricultural and recreational land in the towns of Cohocton, Dansville, Fremont and Wayland - all in Steuben County, close to the Livingston County line.

      As part of the project, innogy will also construct 16.5 miles of access roads; 31 miles of underground electricity collection lines; an electrical substation; a point of interconnection with the existing electrical grid; up to four, 328-foot-tall meteorological towers; up to two temporary staging areas for construction; and a 4,000- to 6,000-square-foot operations and maintenance building.

      Host towns will also receive payments totaling about $600,000 annually for the next 20 years under the terms of community benefit agreements negotiated with innogy.

      The energy company also expects the wind farm to create 117 temporary construction or construction-related jobs.

      A state siting board in September 2019 gave approval to developers to build the wind farm and supporting infrastructure in northern Steuben County.

      The compliance filings, considered among the last steps before a project becomes operational, related to Eight Point Wind, a 101.8 MW wind form in the towns of Greenwood and West Union in Steuben County; Bluestone Wind, a 124-MW wind farm in the Towns of Windosr and Sanford in Broome County; and Number Three Wind, a 105.8 MW wind farm in the towns of Lowville and Harrisburg in Lewis County.

      "These renewable energy projects that are being built are crucial to meeting the aggressive carbon reduction and clean-energy targets set out by the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act," Commission Chair Rory M. Christian said in a news release. "Projects such as these are vital in combatting climate change by reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, boosting clean-energy investment, creating clean-energy jobs, and improving our environment."

      Additional information may be found by going to the Commission Documents section of the Commission's website at www.dps.ny.gov. The case number for Baron Winds is 15-F-0122; and for Eight Point Wind the case number is 16-F-0062.

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