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Screening Project Sites (Macrositing)
Wind energy developers should coordinate with the Service’s Wyoming Field Office for guidance on macrositing or site screening in order to optimize wind energy development while conserving wildlife resources. Macrositing involves using site-specific wildlife and habitat data from multiple preliminary sites to evaluate wildlife issues prior to the selection of a final project area location. Currently available site screening tools include the Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD) wind energy/wildlife conflicts maps. http://gf.state.wy.us/downloads/pdf/Class4Map_Final_for_Web_lowres.pdf
For effective macrositing, we also recommend that developers follow the site evaluation protocol outlined in the Service’s 2003 National Draft Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines. For specific questions regarding threatened and endangered species, migratory birds or bald and golden eagles contact the Service’s Wyoming Field Office at (307) 772-2374.
Contact Relevant Agencies
Early in the planning process, we recommend wind energy developers work with the State of Wyoming. In accordance with Wyoming Governor’s Executive Order (2011-5) and state of Wyoming’s Core Area Strategy, wind energy developments may not be sited within Core Habitat for greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). Consequently, the Service cannot support wind energy development in sage-grouse core habitat in Wyoming. While the Service is willing to participate in discussions regarding impacts to sage-grouse from wind projects proposed outside of core habitat, the project proponent should first meet with WGFD or invite WGFD to participate in the meeting.
Additionally, if federal lands, funding, or authorizations are involved, the appropriate agency (e.g., Bureau of Land Management, Western Area Power Administration), should be contacted for participation in review of the project action.