DEQ approves permit for onshore wind facility construction in Chowan County

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North Carolina Construction News staff writer

The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has issued a permit for Timbermill Wind to construct, operate and decommission an onshore wind energy facility generating up to 189 megawatts in Chowan County.

A public hearing was held July 21, 2022 regarding the proposal for up to 45 turbines and associated infrastructure to be built north of Edenton. This permit is the first for a facility under the session law passed in 2013 establishing a permitting program for wind energy facilities. The application for permit 21-01 was received on May 19, 2022.

Permit conditions will remain in effect for the life of the project, which includes the construction, operation, and decommissioning of the site. Timbermill must comply with all additional local and federal permitting regulations and obtain any necessary permits.

Construction and operating conditions include:

  • Obtaining a “determination of no hazard to air navigation” from the Federal Aviation Administration. All turbines and meteorological towers must be marked and lit according to FAA guidelines and must be visible on night vision goggles. During construction, all turbines must be lit with temporary equipment when reaching a height of more than 200 feet, until permanent lighting is constructed.
  • Minimizing clearing of trees and vegetation during construction, within the bounds of sound engineering principles.
  • Minimizing impacts to jurisdictional wetlands and wildlife by complying with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service terms within a Biological Opinion included as part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ 404 permit.

The final permit, reviews, hearing officer’s report and process to contest the permit are available on the DEQ website.

Click the link for more information on DEMLR’s onshore wind program.

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