Above is my view of La Veta, Colorado.  As I drove in, I saw two deer sauntering, yes, SAUNTERING across a farm field at the edge of town.  And in town, they were just walking around like they owned the place, fat and happy.  This one above was a buck escorting two of his does, maybe one and last year’s progeny, and they were walking down the streets, through yards, hanging out oh-so-casual.

There are some days, well, most days, I confess, when I really love my job… yesterday was another!

Yesterday was a forum held by TLC, Transmission Line Coalition, last night in La Veta and tonight in Alamosa:

TLC Forum Poster

Here’s some of what I had to say:

San Luis Valley Dog & Pony

Xcel, of course, was there, and I’m sure they’ll be there tonight!

Here’s the ALJ Recommendation, this will sound very familiar to those in Minnesota:

San Luis Valley ALJ Recommendation

As we say in transmission, “IT’S ALL CONNECTED.”

Xcel’s GI-2008-32 Feasibility Study Report

HPX Stakeholder 11-14-07 (9.3% line loss, export)

(Pretend there’s a link here to USDA’s RUS EIS page – it’s DOWN DOWN DOWN)  NEVERMIND, it’s now UP UP UP!  From RUS (note this San Luis project is about 4 months behind Dairyland/Capx:

Tri-State Generation and Transmission

Association, Inc.

San Luis Valley-Calumet-Comanche Transmission Project – Huerfona, Alamosa and Pueblo Counties, CO – The agency has decided to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement on this proposal; the original level-of-review was an Environmental Assessment.

What I want to know is WHY they are using lower capacity ACSR conductor for these projects — and the claimed “need” is SO low, why aren’t they just reconductoring the whole system — ACSR, euwwww, that is SO 1960s:

SW MN 345kV Ex35, App. 7 – Conductor Spec

And demand forecasts?  Need a good laugh?  Here’s the sales forecast for Public Service of Colorado, our good friends at Xcel:


I’ve just learned that this area is mushroom country — methinks that this “forecaster” has been dabbling in some of the more exotic varieties to come up with this chart!