Devils River Conservancy Highlights Numerous U.S. Wind Farm Project Cancellations
Nonprofit advocates to obtain a similar outcome in Devils River Watershed
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS (AUGUST 5, 2019) – The massive expansion of unregulated wind energy developments across the state of Texas has encroached on several communities and ecologically significant areas including state-protected wild spaces. As a result, there have been numerous reports of wind farm project cancellations across the region due to the negative impacts wind farms can and have had on their surrounding areas.
In response, the Devils River Conservancy (DRC), is highlighting recent cancellations in an effort to further safeguard the Devils River region from harmful industrial development.
“Communities have voiced their concern around the development of wind farms in areas they don’t belong – and their voices are finally being heard,” said Julie Lewey, Executive Director of the Devils River Conservancy. “The Devils River Watershed is the most ecologically intact river in Texas and could be severely impacted by further wind farm development. This is one of the last wild places in Texas and we have one shot at preserving it.”
Recently Cancelled U.S. Wind Farm Projects Include:
Green Valley (Val Verde County, Texas)
Reason for cancellation: DRC personally met with E.ON Climate and Renewables, Inc. to thoroughly discuss the implications of wind farm development in Green Valley. After further review, the 500 MW Green Valley Energy Project was canceled on December 20, 2018.
Deadman’s Pass (Val Verde County, Texas)
Reason for cancellation: After town meetings and discussions, DRC influenced a groundswell of public opinion opposing wind farm development at Deadman’s Pass. As a result, the energy project was canceled in April 2019.
NextEra Energy - Minco & Crowder Projects (Oklahoma)
Reason for cancellation: Governor Kevin Stitt signed a law that added more safeguards from encroachment to military bases by wind farm projects to ensure low-level pilot training would not be compromised. As a result, two wind farm projects were cancelled in May 2019. These projects were within 120 miles of Sheppard Air Force Base. If the same rule was applied in Texas, Val Verde County would be protected from wind farm developments due to its close proximity to Laughlin Air Force Base.
Longtime landowners and conservation advocates like Dell Dickinson have witnessed firsthand the negative implications unregulated wind farm developments, like the Rocksprings Val Verde Wind Farm, has had on the environment and ecological landscapes in Val Verde County.
“Being forced to look at the Rocksprings Val Verde Wind Farm across the county from my property on a daily basis, serves as a constant reminder of the clear and present danger that additional unregulated wind farms can have on Val Verde County,” said Dell Dickinson. “These proposed developments threaten the entire spectrum of actual stakeholders of the county such as the public and private landowners, the wildlife, the stargazers and perhaps the most important, the ecotourism visitors.These prospective projects, if allowed to proceed, will significantly and negatively alter this pristine, wild environment to the detriment of Val Verde County itself - forever.”
To learn more about the Devils River Conservancy’s “Don’t Blow It” campaign and ways to support heritage and the future of this wild side of Texas, please visit, dontblowittexas.org.