Pacificorp was developing a new site that included 500-230 kV Snow Goose Substation in southern Oregon. It featured a 650 MVA 500-230 kV transformer bank, control building, associated bus work, and switchgear. The entire station was fenced and included room for planned expansion on approximately 35 to 40 acres. New transmission line taps for 230 kV and 500 kV lines integrated the new substation into the existing 230 kV and 500 kV systems. The substation also contained equipment to add reliability to the local 69 kV system.
ECI’s Environmental Services Department was contracted to conduct a full siting study, including an ultimate site recommendation that is reasonable and feasible for the 500-230 kV substation based on engineering, land use, environmental, permitting and cost constraints. Siting constraints included characteristics like existing utility infrastructure, electric load, zoning, existing land use, proposed land use, jurisdiction, right of way cost and construction cost. Upon identification and selection of a site, ECI then proceeded with all necessary regulatory permitting of the selected site in preparation for acquisition and construction.
ECI prepared all site permitting documentation, including a Conditional Use application and testimony before the county commission in pursuit of a Land Use Compatibility Statement. Building and approach construction permits were also obtained. Consultation with the Oregon Division of State Lands resulted in a project concurrence under the Removal-Fill laws of the state. Field reviews for cultural, biological and wetland resources were conducted and subsequent permits were obtained in accordance with the Clean Water Act. Additional efforts included coordination with the Bureau of Reclamation and the Klamath Irrigation District for overhead irrigation canal crossings.
Wetland mitigation was required as a result of Waters of the United States within the project boundaries. ECI, in cooperation with local subcontractor Rabe Consulting, prepared a full mitigation plan to the satisfaction of the Army Corps of Engineers.
ECI provided full on-site resource review, expert testimony and project construction support with respect to regulatory compliance.