to have enormous potential &ndash particularly from the state's wind and coal resources &ndash to produce electrical energy for regional and national consumption. With the adoption of Renewal Portfolio Standards by many Western states, the development of wind, a renewable energy resource, has become particularly attractive. Not surprisingly then, numerous wind farms across Montana are currently in various proposal and development stages.
The development of new electrical production, including wind, in the state faces constraints, however, including an existing transmission infrastructure of limited capacity. As a result, proposals for several new interregional electrical transmission lines are also currently under consideration. Because the implications of large transmission projects &ndash and large-scale wind farms &ndash are numerous, sizable, and enduring, it is imperative that Montanans and other interested citizens understand the proposed projects and their likely impacts.
Transmission and wind proposals generate public concern about a number of issues, including environmental impacts, location, and encouragement of different sources and methods of energy production. The analysis provided by The Policy Institute will focus on a particular aspect of this development &ndash tax and economic implications &ndash that is seldom given sufficient scrutiny and is often discussed with excessive presumption.