Final Habitat Conservation Plan and Environmental Impact Statement
Released for Ohio’s Buckeye Wind Farm
By Georgia Parham
The Service has released the final habitat conservation plan developed by Buckeye Wind LLC for their proposed wind power project in Champaign County, Ohio. Buckeye Wind developed the plan because the federally endangered Indiana bat occurs in the project area. The habitat conservation plan includes measures to minimize impacts and to ensure long-term conservation of Indiana bats through off-site mitigation, which will offset the incidental take from construction and operation of the facility.
Buckeye Wind’s habitat conservation plan covers the company’s activities that may result in take of Indiana bats during the life of the wind project. The plan addresses conservation needs for the Indiana bat including measures to avoid and minimize the potential for take; mitigation, including protecting and enhancing existing habitat; monitoring take through post-construction mortality studies; adaptive management; and funding of research to better understand Indiana bat and wind turbine interactions.
Buckeye Wind proposes construction and operation of a maximum of 100 wind turbines and associated facilities, for a period of 30 years, in eastern Champaign County, Ohio. While approximately 80,000 total acres are located within the Buckeye Wind Action Area, a relatively small portion of that land, about 130 acres, will be permanently occupied by project facilities. The project would include wind turbines, access roads, and other facilities.