AUSTIN (CN) - The Texas Public Utility Commission illegally plans to allow Texas Gulf Wind to build enormous wind-energy farms off the Texas Gulf Coast, the Coastal Habitat Alliance claims in Federal Court. The Alliance claims the wind farms will destroy habitat and protected wildlife on 60,000 acres in Kenedy County's fragile Laguna Madre ecosystem, in violation of state and federal environmental laws.
Laguna Madre is one of three hypersaline bays in the world, and hosts millions of migratory birds, whose three major migratory pathways converge over the threatened area. The laguna and nearby wetlands are a world-famous birding site.
Defendant Texas Gulf Wind, wholly owned by defendant Babcock & Brown, and defendant PPM Energy plan to build 240 "massive towers" more than 400 feet tall, each weighing more than 160 tons, with rotor blades 300 feet in diameter, connected by more than 20 miles of roads and rights of way that will divide and destroy habitat.
Plaintiffs claim "this is precisely the type of development" prohibited by the Coastal Zone Management Act and the Texas Coastal Management Program. They are represented by James Blackburn with Blackburn Carter of Houston. See complaint.
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