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The chamber, in compliance with “Safe at home” practices to contain the spread of Covid-19, is closed and not having activities that are usually scheduled. Reopening the chamber is part of Stage 4 as it stands now in the state’s guidelines, for activities and groups. Meanwhile, the chamber newsletter and Facebook page will continue to alert people to activities being planned for the future and things that are happening now, although differently than usual. The chamber board is meeting by phone at noon on the first Friday of the month instead of in person. Our minutes are posted under Chamber Business on this site.
Once, Rio Dell had flags on Wildwood for holiday weekends, though the flags are no longer in use, or available. The chamber is seeking to bring back that tradition, with the purchase of flags to place along Wildwood, with poles and a plaque on each to name the sponsor. Here’s your chance to sponsor a flag that would be placed out for holiday and other celebratory events (Wildwood Days for example) for years to come.The cost is $50 –you can have a 2-to 3-line message of up to 15 characters each line on the plaque. This would be a great way to honor a family member, friend, or other loved one on Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, graduation, an anniversary, birthday or wedding . . . with an ongoing beautification of the community. Contact the chamber of commerce at 506-5081 or email@example.com questions, or send your check for $50 with your inscription message to PO Box 95, Rio Dell, CA 95562.
The Chamber of Commerce will remain closed to business for the foreseeable future in order to protect the health of the community and to comply with requests to shelter in place.
Our monthly board meeting, scheduled for April 3, will be conducted by the board through online communications.
To reach the chamber about this or other matters, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Phone messages and mail will be picked up occasionally.
Call 707.506.5081 to leave a message or write to PO Box 95, Rio Dell, CA 95562.
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The Humboldt County Planning Commission voted not to approve the windfarm proposal. Terra-Gen is appealing and the matter is scheduled to go to the Board of Supervisors Dec. 16. Opponents, which includes the City of Rio Dell and the Town of Scotia LLC, are gathering signatures on a petition and planning a march from the Winema Theater in Scotia to Rio Dell City Hall on Sat., Dec. 14.
Chapter 9 contains changes made to the project and mitigation measures based on comments from agencies and the public and the applicant’s efforts to continually refine the project footprint, which are summarized below.
This final report will be submitted to the county Planning Commissioon for a hearing scheduled for Thurs., Nov. 7 starting at 4 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors chambers at the Humboldt County Courthouse which will be continued at the same time and place on Nov. 14. The Planning Commission could take action at that meeting or, if needed, continue the matter to Nov. 21.
The staff report for this meeting can be found at: https://humboldt.legistar.com/
According to county supervising planner Steve Werner, the staff report excerpt below describes the major changes to the project since the draft report was released:
a. Reduction in projected ground disturbance. The project changes would reduce the
amount of ground disturbance from approximately 900 acres of permanent and
temporary impacts to approximately 655 acres.
b. Realignment and shortening of gen-tie to avoid northern spotted owl activity centers and
foraging and roosting habitat. The total length has been reduced from approximately 25
miles to approximately 22 miles. Where possible, the realigned gen-tie corridor has been
co-located with existing access roads to avoid and minimize site disturbance. For those
limited instances in which the realigned corridor would be located outside the survey
corridor presented in the DEIR, additional field surveys have been conducted to confirm
that the realigned location would not change conclusions from the DEIR and would not
be considered significant new information requiring recirculation.
c. Reduction in the number of turbines from 60 to 47. All turbines would continue to be
located within the study corridor analyzed in the DEIR, spread across Monument and Bear
River Ridges. The applicant has reduced the number of turbines on Bear River Ridge from
CUP-18-002 Humboldt Wind Project 13999 November 7, 2019 Page 6
23 to 20 turbines, and on Monument Ridge, reduced the number of turbines from 37 to 27
turbines. This change has allowed the applicant to further avoid and/or minimize impacts,
including avoidance of certain known cultural resource sites; avoidance and minimization
of impacts on biological resources; and elimination of significant noise impacts on
d. Overhead crossing of gen-tie line over Eel River. Originally, the gen-tie line was proposed
to be underground under the Eel River using horizontal directional drilling. The gen-tie is
now proposed to be relocated 1.8 miles east of the previous route to further reduce
visibility of the gen-tie line to surrounding communities and will use wooden H-frame and
steel monopole structures. The gen-tie will cross at the same level as the Highway 101
e. Realignment of access roads. Since publication of the DEIR, the applicant has agreed to
incorporate into the project the “realigned Jordan Creek access” at the Jordan Creek
staging area that is described in Alternative 2 in the DEIR, which will completely avoid
northern spotted owl activity centers and minimize impacts on northern spotted owl
nesting, roosting, and foraging habitat.
f. Reduced substation footprint. The proposed footprint of the substation has been reduced
from approximately 5 acres to 2.5 acres, to reduce overall site disturbance.
A wind farm has been proposed for Bear River Ridge and Monument Ridge near Scotia by Terra Gen, a San Diego-based renewable energy company formed in 2007. It specializes in the development, construction, and operation of utility-scale wind, solar, energy storage, and geothermal generation facilities and is owned by Energy Capital Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing in North American energy infrastructure, which acquired Terra-Gen in 2015.
Terra-Gen proposes erecting up to 60 wind turbines, each up to nearly 600 feet tall on private land owned by area ranchers and the Humboldt Redwood Company in a project called Humboldt Wind LLC. The project could generate up to 155 megawatts of renewable energy, enough to power nearly 40,000 homes, according to developers. The power would be carried 15 miles through mostly above-ground lines to connect to the Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) grid at Bridgeville.
Many people and organizations have weighed in over the past year that the project has been in development and under discussion. Some support it for providing advantages like up to initial construction jobs and fewer long-term positions after completion; tax benefits to the county (where it would be second only to PG&E in the tax revenue it would provide); and the advantages of renewable energy at a time when much attention is being paid to climate change.
Others cite feared destruction to the area, from the creation of needed roads to serve the project, from the deaths of birds caused by the turbines, and from the effect on the viewscape the turbines could cause, as well as possible noise and lighting impacts on area residents. The importance of this area to the Yurok people, and the number of unknowns that exist as the project moves ahead with regard to possible environmental harm, are other concerns.
The plan has been followed carefully in many area media outlets. Here is a summary of information by the Humboldt County Planning and Building department: https://humboldtgov.org/2408/Humboldt-Wind-Energy-Project.
The Rio Dell City Council opposes the project, with a letter you can read here: (Letter by Rio Dell City Council)
The Town of Scotia opposes the project, read its response here: (Letter by Town of Scotia)