“One Bird Every Two Years” Costs GH PUD, Others, Wind Farm

Richland, WA – Plans for the first major wind farm in Western Washington have been canceled because of federal restrictions to protect a threatened seabird, the marbled murrelet.

Richland-based Energy Northwest and four southwest Washington utilities spent four years and more than $4 million trying to put 32 wind turbines on Radar Ridge near Naselle.

The Tri-City Herald reports Energy Northwest announced the cancellation Wednesday at a board meeting in Portland. The Group was working with Grays Harbor, Pacific, Clallam and Mason County public utility districts on the project that would have generated enough electricity for about 18,000 homes.

Energy Northwest says the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service imposed “untenable” restrictions on the wind farm because studies showed one bird could have been harmed every two years.