The BLM is expected to make a decision on its portion of the site plan by July 15. A report comparing the Kenetech proposal with that of SeaWest is almost complete. The turbines would be larger than those of Kenetech, up to 1.5 MW, and painted a special colour to help deter birds. Electric lines would also be buried and turbines would be kept away from the edges of Foote Creek Rim to help reduce birds deaths by about half of the number that was expected for the Kenetech project.
Preliminary construction of this first 68 MW, $60 million phase is scheduled to go ahead in August. The plant would be on-line by the end of 1998 to take advantage of the federal tax credits, which expire in June of the next year. Ultimately, though, the project could be expanded to 900 turbines and an installed capacity of 500 MW, SeaWest officials told the Denver Post last month.