Project Description

Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) proposes to rebuild its existing 60-mile-long Shelton-Fairmount No. 1 115-kilovolt (kV) wood pole transmission line, which extends from BPA’s Shelton Substation in Mason County, Washington to BPA’s Fairmount Substation in Jefferson County, Washington.  The line is the sole point of service for multiple substations/customers west of the Hood Canal including Potlatch Substation, Duckabush Substation, and Quilcene Substation.  The Shelton-Fairmount No. 1 line was built in 1949 and is nearing the end of its service life.  It is experiencing performance issues due to its age, its poor grounding, and its overall condition.  The line needs to be rebuilt to ensure reliable electric service and the safety of the public and transmission workers.

The proposed rebuild project would include rebuilding most of the existing wood pole structures along the line and replacing conductors (the transmission wires), overhead ground-wire, all associated hardware, and disconnect switching facilities.  New structures would also be added at some locations along the line, and access roads along the line would be upgraded or repaired where needed to accommodate construction vehicles. 

The proposed project would also replace the existing fiber optic cable along about 107 miles of existing BPA transmission lines, including the Shelton-Fairmount No. 1 line.  In addition to replacing the fiber optic cable on the Shelton-Fairmount No. 1 line, fiber optic cable would be replaced on existing BPA transmission lines from BPA’s Olympia Substation in Thurston County, Washington to the Shelton Substation, and from the Fairmount Substation to BPA’s Port Angeles Substation in Clallam County, Washington.  Access roads associated with the fiber optic cable replacement in the Olympia to Shelton and the Fairmount to Port Angeles sections would be upgraded or repaired where needed to accommodate replacement activities.   

 

Environmental Review

To understand the potential environmental impacts of this proposal, BPA may prepare an environmental assessment (EA) following the procedures of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). If BPA determines that an EA should be prepared, the EA would analyze the proposal, as well as a no-action alternative in which the transmission line would not be rebuilt, and the fiber optic cable would not be replaced, with both continuing to be repaired as needed.  The EA would also describe anticipated impacts to natural and human resources and will identify mitigation measures to help avoid or minimize impacts.

The U.S. Forest Service is cooperating with BPA on the environmental review process because about four miles of the transmission line traverse the Olympic National Forest. BPA will work with potentially affected landowners, tribes, federal, state and local agencies, and interest groups to inform the environmental review.

The proposed schedule for the environmental review is as follows:

Comment period                                                         March 23, 2022 – April 22, 2022

Draft EA (if warranted)                                               Fall 2022

Final EA (if warranted)                                               Late Spring 2023

Finding of No Significant Impact (if warranted)     Late Spring 2023

If decision to build, construction start                    Spring 2024

Current Status

BPA has concluded scoping and the comment period closed on April 22, 2022. BPA is now considering comments to help determine if an Environmental Assessment is warranted and the issues that should be addressed in the environmental review.

Contact

For environmental information, contact:

Mike O’Connell 
Environmental Protection Specialist 
Bonneville Power Administration – ECT-4 
PO Box 3621
Portland, Oregon 97208-3621

Toll-free: 800-622-4519
Direct line: 503-230-7692
Email: mjoconnell@bpa.gov

 

 

For project information, contact:

 

Scott Lissit
Project Manager
Flux Resources
Bonneville Power Administration – TEPF-3
PO Box 3621
Portland, Oregon 97208-3621

Toll-free: 800-622-4519
Direct line: 503-230-5057
Email: salissit@bpa.gov

Documents

Comments received

Public letter (03/23/2022)

Project Map  (02/09/2022)

Comment Form