Wind Project & First Of A Kind Partnership

Wind Project & First Of A Kind Partnership

Wind Project & First Of A Kind Partnership

I’m Lacy Gray with Washington Ag Today.

Earlier this week Governor Inslee attended a dedication of the Palouse Wind project near Oakesdale. The $220 million project has been up and running now for seven months and generates enough energy to power about 30,000 homes. Inslee extolled the project as green energy produced from the wheat, pea and barley fields of the Palouse, and a perk for local growers. Farmers leasing the land for the turbines get royalties off the wind production. It is estimated that payments will be around $4000 per turbine per year.

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and Defense Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Installations and Environment John Conger announced what the USDA calls a unique and first of a kind partnership on Wednesday between federal, local and private entities that will preserve agricultural lands, assist with military readiness and restore and protect wildlife habitat. The Sentinel Landscapes partnership will be launched in the South Puget Sound region, and is focused on the Joint Base Lewis-McChord location. lInterior Secretary Jewell, a native of Washington, expounds.

JEWELL: We have in this particular case an extraordinary resource - an undeveloped prairie, which is home to some very special plants and animals and surrounding forests. Our federal agencies are now going to join with state and local partners in the South Puget Sound area to maintain this habitat and to ensure that farmers and ranchers can continue their work on the land. We’re also going to be providing regulatory predictability for landowners under the Endangered Species Act so that they can continue to invest in conservation, but also in their work in a way that will be supported by the Fish and Wildlife Service.

Several of the at-risk species in this area include Taylor's checkerspot butterfly, the streaked horned lark, and the Mazama pocket gopher.


Thanks for listening. I’m Lacy Gray and that’s Washington Ag Today on the Ag Information Network. 

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