BPA proposes to completely rebuild the Midway-Moxee 115-kilovolt (kV) transmission line in Benton and Yakima Counties, Washington. This 34-mile long transmission line is owned and operated by BPA. It begins at the BPA Midway Substation and ends at the BPA Moxee Substation in Moxee, Wash., about five miles east of Yakima. The rebuilt transmission line would continue to operate at 115-kV.
Rebuilding this transmission line would enable BPA to continue providing reliable electric power to local utilities. The rebuild is needed because the transmission line, which was built in the early 1940s, is old; the existing wood pole structures and electrical wires (conductors) show normal deterioration due to age. Some existing access roads would need to be improved to provide construction access and some new access roads may be needed to reach structures for which BPA currently does not have adequate access.
Beginning in spring 2013, BPA employees or contractors will conduct background research, field studies, coordination and consultation to learn more about the project area environment and the potential impacts of this proposed project. BPA will prepare an Environmental Assessment (EA) under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to assess the potential environmental impacts of the proposed work and identify ways to reduce these impacts. The preliminary EA is expected to be available for public review and comment in late 2013 or early 2014.
Feedback we receive during the public comment period will be used to help develop the EA. In addition we will have at least one public meeting to provide information on the project and take questions and comments. The first meeting will be held in Moxee, Wash., Wednesday, Feb. 20.
BPA will provide details about the meeting at www.bpa.gov and on the project website.