Drought causing delay in tree and shrub mitigation at an Oliver County wind farm

Jul 13, 2017

Public Service Commissioners Brian Kroshus (i), Randy Christmann and Julie Fedorchak.
Credit Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Another impact of the drought in south-central North Dakota.

The developer of a wind farm and new transmission line in Oliver County will delay replanting of trees and shrubs affected by the development. That replanting is required by the Public Service Commission.

Oliver Wind III, LLC will delay planting until next year.

Commissioner Julie Fedorchak said the delay is a good idea.

"They were concerned there would be a low survivability of the trees and shrubs they did plant," Fedorchak said. "That's because of the lack of rain and drought conditions."

Fedorchak said it makes more sense to wait until the beginning of next year.

"Hopefully, we will be getting more rain," Fedorchak said.

The company had planned to plant 22 trees and 204 shrubs this year.

According to the US Drought Monitor, much of southwest and south central North Dakota is in extreme drought.