Chokecherry and Sierra Madre (CCSM) Wind Energy Project

Wind Turbine

The Chokecherry and Sierra Madre (CCSM) Wind Energy Project was proposed by the Power Company of Wyoming (PCW) in 2008. The project consists of two wind development areas, Chokecherry and Sierra Madre. The two wind development areas, comprise a 219,707-acre conceptual area of development of mixed public and private land located about 10 miles south of Rawlins, Wyoming. The CCSM Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Record of Decision (ROD) was completed and signed on October 9, 2012. The CCSM EIS described the impacts of 1,000 wind turbines and described a NEPA framework for how the project would be authorized but did not identify individual turbine locations. The ROD identified the proposed project area suitable to accommodate a 2,000- to 3,000-megawatt wind farm consisting of up to 1,000 wind turbine generators.

Based on the analysis, multiple site-specific, environmental assessments (EAs) tiered to the EIS were envisioned prior to issuing the wind energy development right-of-way (ROW). These EAs apply to the following components:

  • Environmental Assessment 1 (EA1) Infrastructure Components analyzed (Phase 1 haul road and facilities (site-specific plan of development 1), road rock quarry (SPOD 2) and the West Sinclair rail facility (SPOD 3)). The Decision Record (DR) was signed by the Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary of Lands and Minerals on December 23, 2014. BLM issued the ROW for EA1 on August 25, 2016 allowing PCW to move forward with infrastructure construction.
     
  • Environmental Assessment 2 (EA2) Phase I Turbine Development analyzed the first 500 wind turbines in the western portion of the two wind development areas. BLM released a Draft DR and Finding of no Significant Impact in March 2016. BLM will issue a ROW grant and Notice to Proceed only after BLM determines a Decision on EA 2 and selects the Proposed Action, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides BLM a letter that they concur with PCW's Eagle Conservation Plan and Bird and Bat Conservation Strategy (also referred to as an Avian Protection Plan). The decision was signed on January 17, 2017 approving the Proposed Action. 
     
  • Phase II Development, including Phase II Infrastructure and Phase II Turbine Development will be analyzed in future NEPA documents. Phase II includes the eastern portion of the Chokecherry and Sierra Madre wind development areas.  

Decision records for EA2 and EA3 will also be signed by DOI, consistent with the 2012 EIS ROD and EA1.

The table below indicates the current progress of EA2.

1. Planning Assessment Phase

Completed

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.

2. Notice of Intent

Completed

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.

3. Scoping Phase

Completed

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.

4. Preliminary Alternatives

Completed

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.

5. Draft RMP: Notice of Availability

Completed

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.

6. Proposed RMP: Notice of Availability

Completed

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.

7. Record of Decisions: Notice of Availability

In Progress

Visit the project's ePlanning page for more information.