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Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County

Permits and other issues delay construction of Santa Barbara County’s first major wind energy project

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. - Permits and other issues have delayed delivery of massive turbine blades for a highly anticipated and controversial wind energy project near Lompoc.

Delivery of the blades was expected to begin this week with special arrangements made for the very large trucks that carry the huge cargo loads of turbine blades.

Temporary highway, street and road closures are expected, mainly overnight or in the early morning hours, when the trucks make their way down the Central Coast from a port in northern California.

"Roughly a 260 foot, give or take a couple of feet, vehicle, very large, will be moving with a CHP escort", said local CalTrans spokesperson Jim Shivers, "They'll be doing this very carefully, and I think our word to drivers is 'be aware of this large equipment, be aware of the law enforcement escort, and just be alert if you should encounter this movement on the highway'."

The Strauss Wind Energy project site is at the end of San Miguelito Canyon Road southwest of Lompoc along the border with Vandenberg Space Force Base.

When construction is completed, the wind farm is expected to include at least 29 turbines standing over 400 feet tall and generating enough energy to power tens of thousands of local homes and businesses every year.

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Keith Carls

Keith Carls is a reporter at NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Keith, click here.

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