America Eniday North America Renewables

Wyoming has big plans for California

Nicholas Newman Eniday July 2017
Building a new wind turbines

The American states of California and Wyoming couldn’t be more different. For instance, the state of California has the largest economy in the US and has set a target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent from 1990 levels by 2030. In practice, this means it plans to get half of its power from renewables as soon as 2030. In contrast, Wyoming has the 49th smallest state economy, a population of just 0.5 million and is dependent on coal…

These two very different states will soon be connected by fossil fuel billionaire Philip Anschutz, who plans to build a 3,000 MW wind-power farm on his ranch in Wyoming and export the power to California through a new 730-mile HVDC (High Voltage Direct Current) Transmission line. “At 3,000 MW, the full Chokecherry and Sierra Madre Wind Energy Project (CCSM Project) is projected to produce 10.5-12 million megawatt-hours per year of clean renewable electricity,” states Kara Choquette, Director of Communications, at Power Company of Wyoming LLC.


California is the world’s 6th largest economy and its power market is commensurately large peaking at around 261.2-megawatt hours during the working week in 2014. See Figure 1. With demand for power exceeding supply, California is forced at times to import power from adjoining states and Mexico, according to the grid operator, California ISO.

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