From Open Energy Information

Transmission Recreation

Present, Potentially Affected

  • BLM-NV-WN-ES-08-01-1310, NV-020-08-01 (Blue Mountain Geothermal Well Field and Power Plant EA)
  • Big Eddy-Knight (Big Eddy-Knight Transmission Project Environmental Impact Statement)
  • Boardman to Hemingway (Environmental Impact Statement and Land Use Plan Amendments for the Boardman to Hemingway Transmission Line Project)
  • CA-96062042 (Fourmile Hill Geothermal Development Project Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) / Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for Geothermal/Power Plant, Geothermal/Well Field, Geothermal/Transmission)
  • Central Ferry Lower Monumental (Central Ferry-Lower Monumental 500-kilovolt Transmission Line Project)
  • DOI-BLM-CA-017-05-051 (Basalt Canyon Geothermal Pipeline Project Environmental Assessment and Draft Environmental Impact Report for Geothermal/Well Field)
  • DOI-BLM-CA-ES-2007-017-3200 (Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Truckhaven Geothermal Leasing Area)
  • DOI-BLM-CA-ES-2013-002+1793-EIS (Casa Diablo IV Geothermal Development Project EIS at Long Valley Caldera Geothermal Area for Geothermal/Power Plant)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-063-EA08-091 (Jersey Valley and Buffalo Valley Geothermal Development Projects EA for Geothermal/Power Plant)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-B020-2011-0026-EA (Clayton Valley Geothermal Exploration Project EA for Drilling and Well Testing)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-B020-2012-0214-EA (Silver Peak Area Geothermal Exploration Project EA for Drilling and Well Testing for Geothermal/Exploration)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2010-0006-EA (Gabbs Valley and Dead Horse Wells Geothermal Exploration Projects EA for Geothermal/Exploration)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2010-0016-EA (EA for Airborne Electromagnetic Survey at Patua Geothermal Project for Geothermal/Well Field, Geothermal/Power Plant)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2011-0001-EA (Coyote Canyon Utilization Project EA for TGP for Geothermal/Power Plant)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-CC-ES-11-10-1793 (Salt Wells Geothermal Energy Projects EIS for Geothermal/Power Plant Development Drilling)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-W010-2010-0004-EA (New York Canyon Geothermal Exploration Project EA for Exploration Drilling and Well Testing)
  • DOI-BLM-NV-W010-2011-0001-EA (EA of the Leach Hot Springs Geothermal Exploration Project at Grass Valley Geothermal Area for Geothermal/Exploration, Geothermal/Well Field Drilling and Well Testing)
  • DOI-BLM-OR-P040-0021-EA (EA for Exploratory Wells at Midnight Point and Mahogany Geothermal Exploration Projects, Glass Buttes, Oregon for Geothermal/Exploration)
  • Eldorado Ivanpah Transmission Project (EIS/EIR for the Eldorado-Ivanapah Transmission Project)
  • NV-020-07-EA-01 (EA for Observation Wells at Jersey Valley Geothermal Exploration Project for Geothermal/Well Field, Geothermal/Exploration)
  • NV-063-EA06-098 (Reese River Valley Geothermal Exploration Project Environmental Assessment)
  • NV-EA-030-07-05 (EA for Thermal Gradient Holes at Salt Wells for Geothermal/Exploration)
  • San Juan Basin EC (San Juan Basin Energy Connect Project Environmental Impact Statement)
  • Southline Transmission Line (Environmental Impact Statement for the Southline Transmission Line Project)
  • Sun Valley to Morgan Transmission Line (Environmental Impact Statement for the Sun Valley to Morgan Transmission Line Project)
  • Transwest Express (Transwest Express Transmission Project Environmental Impact Statement)
  • Vantage Pomona Heights (Environmental Impact Statement for the Vanage to Pomona Heights 230kV Transmission Line Project)

The Recreation and Public Purposes Act (RPPA) (68 Statute 173; 43 U.S.C. 869 et. seq.) enables the sale of public lands for public recreation. These lands do not include, “national forests, national parks and monuments, national wildlife refuges, Indian lands, and acquired lands.” Recreation activities on public lands are also recognized in the Federal Land Policy Management Act (FLPMA) (P.L. 94-579) under the multiple use clause. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages lands covered under FLPMA and appointed by the Secretary of the Interior.


Recreation Impacts & Mitigation

Transmission lines primarily pose visual and aesthetic impacts to recreationalists, while causing low impacts to other categories. Categories include impacts to usage, traffic, noise, and fugitive dust. In addition, seasonal recreation usage may be inhibited by construction activities or new provisions set by the transmission line or substations. Construction traffic may increase during development activities causing bottlenecks to recreationalist parking and access. This may also impact noise and disrupt pristine outdoor experiences.. Typical mitigation measures include:


  • Tower and counterpoise installation, tower footings, new access roads, temporary pulling/tensioning sites, and fiber optic wood poles may inhibit natural beauty viewing, therefore, situate structures outside park boundaries, realign access roads with the right-of way centerline, avoid recreation areas, and follow land contours.


  • Winter activities such as snowmobiling require plowed roads to access recreation areas. To mitigate snowy roads, plow roads with minimum length and width parameters and concentrate plowing durations.
  • Install signs indicating when recreationalists enter and exit site areas; and when transmission lines or piping is nearby. This avoids property line ambiguity, especially when snow has accrued.
  • Disclose the acres impacted and whether or not the area will be temporarily impacted to inform users of new trail closures and restricted activities.


  • To mitigate recreationalist traffic bottlenecks, plan oversized vehicles pickup and drop offs outside of peak road usage.
  • Encourage employee carpooling and off-site vehicle parking.

Noise and fugitive dust

  • Construction can cause short-term disturbance to recreationalists and the wildlife that inhabits these areas. Noise abatement techniques include installing mufflers on all motorized equipment and buffers between metal equipment.
  • Water down unpaved roads at the construction site to mitigate fugitive dust particles.


Site security

  • This also increases the risk of site trespassing and vandalized equipment. To mitigate site risks, enclose the construction site’s perimeter with fencing, install a security system, and after hours lighting.