Environmental Group Appeals Southwest Idaho Power Line Approval

Feb 22, 2017

Credit Tom Banse

An environmental group has filed an appeal seeking to stop the construction of two high-voltage transmission lines in southwestern Idaho.

Western Watersheds Project filed the appeal late last week with the U.S. Department of the Interior's Board of Land Appeals concerning the Gateway West project.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management last month issued a formal decision approving a plan by Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power to build and operate 321 miles of 500-kilovolt transmission lines on public land in Idaho's Gooding, Elmore, Owyhee, Cassia and Twin Falls counties.

Western Watersheds Project in its appeal contends the BLM violated environmental laws in approving the project that the group says will damage habitat for imperiled sage grouse and provide hunting platforms for predatory raptors.