Another skirmish in the battle over wind farms on the Kenedy Ranch.
The legal battle over two large and controversial wind energy projects on the South Texas coast escalated Tuesday when the Coastal Habitat Alliance asked a federal judge in Austin to halt construction.
Citing the threat of irreparable environmental harm, lawyers for the alliance, a loose coalition of opponents to the massive projects, asked U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel to issue a preliminary injunction against the developers.
“The wind farms threaten a particularly precious, vulnerable area surrounding the Laguna Madre,” reads the motion. “If (construction) is allowed to continue, this will cause one of the most serious environmental disasters ever to occur on the Texas Coast.”
The group’s 10 members include the King Ranch, the American Bird Conservancy, the Lower Laguna Madre Foundation and the Coastal Bend Audubon Society.
Its lawyer, Jim Blackburn, said another motion seeking swifter action likely will follow.
“Essentially, we are filing this to get it on the record, and I expect we’ll come back and file for a temporary restraining order later this week, asking for an immediate hearing to stop everything,” he said.
They’re going to need quick action, because work is set to begin soon. I still want to see this project go forward. I think we have a real need for energy alternatives, and the more leadership Texas shows in developing wind energy, the better. I do have some concerns about the impact on birds, but I’m not sure we know any more now about what is likely to happen than we did when the CHA first started to push back.
That Caller story notes that the CHA’s state lawsuit was dismissed; the federal suit is still ongoing. I missed the news about that and can’t find any stories now. Guess the CHA took me off their press release list – I didn’t get anything from them about this story, either. Alas.