Write a Comment: Searchlight Wind Project
The deadline for comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Searchlight Wind Project is April 18th. Below is a sample letter that can be copy and pasted or the ideas can be used so you can write your own letter.
^^Joshua tree at sunset in the Searchlight Hills, Nevada. The southern part of the proposed wind energy project would fill this view.
Dear Mr. Helseth,
I would like to submit these comments for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Searchlight Wind Energy Project (NVN-084626). I am opposed to the project for the following reasons:
1. The Purpose and Need Statement should incorporate a “need” to protect wildlife, visual resources, cultural resources, property values and public health.
2. The DEIS failed to consider a full range of alternatives. The National Environmental Policy Act requires the Bureau of Land Management to examine alternatives outside of the jurisdiction of the lead agency.
3. The BLM needs to consider a distributed generation alternative, a private lands alternative and an alternative that sites the project away from sensitive wildlife resources and private property.
4. The BLM needs to include an alternative that designates the site inappropriate for wind energy.
5. The DEIS states that the Las Vegas Resource Management Plan will not need to be amended to approve this project because the site was examined by the Wind Energy Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement in 2006, but the Wind PEIS contains very little specific information on the Searchlight Wind Project site. The Las Vegas Resource Management Plan is a very big land use plan and will need to be amended to examine the impacts of the project.
6. In some cases, the project would be located within a quarter mile of private property. The DEIS does a poor job of evaluating public health impacts such as Wind Turbine Syndrome and effects from dust stirred up during construction.
7. The project would damage the property values of local residents.
8. The project would be located in very close proximity to Lake Mead National Recreation Area and the Colorado River which has a unique and important avian fauna. It is a fly-way for migratory birds. The numbers from the Altamont Pass wind farms in California prove that wind energy injures and kills avian fauna. The nearest turbines would be just 8 miles from the Colorado River.
9. Lake Mead is an essential area for wintering bald eagles and golden eagle nests have been found within 5 miles of the project. Golden eagles are being killed by wind turbines all over North America.
10. Surveys for the project have stated that the desert tortoise population numbers are about 13 adults per square mile which is significant. The project will fragment the habitat with large wind turbine footprints and about 30 new miles of roads, many of which will be 36 feet wide. Mitigation proposals are not sufficient to prevent impacts to the species.
11. The project would block linkage and movement corridors for desert bighorn sheep.
12. Most of the biological resource mitigation for the project is deferred and there is little information on how the applicant will mitigate impacts to bats, burrowing owls, Gila monsters, rare plants, etc.
13. The DEIS has not evaluated all of the cultural resources located on the site.
14. The project will have negative impacts on the visual resources in the area. It will be visible from Lake Mead National Recreation Area, the Mojave National Preserves and wilderness areas adjacent to the site. The project will also have red flashing aviation lights activated for the entire night. The project will be a visual disturbance to the local residents of the area which could impact the tourism economy.
I would like to request that BLM adopt a No Action Alternative for this project and to designate the area inappropriate for wind energy.
Your name and address here: