A confidential pipeline client plans to install multiple solar power facilities “behind the meter” at over a dozen pump stations as part of their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) and sustainability commitments. Each facility is planned to produce no less than 5 megawatts (MW) of solar power to provide electricity for pipeline operations. Barr was hired to provide key environmental evaluations to support feasibility analyses for these sites in the upper Midwest and advance them to the next stage of development ahead of construction planned for 2024.
Barr began by conducting desktop reviews for the proposed sites to assist our client in solidifying site boundaries. We developed figures with publicly available information to document natural resources and land cover at each site. We conducted desktop reviews to identify potential impacts to waterways, wetlands, and threatened and endangered species. Additionally, we performed cultural resource literature reviews at each site to identify previously recorded archaeological sites, historic structures, and other relevant cultural resources. Barr also developed a site-specific baseline environmental schedule to keep the environmental reviews on track.
Next, Barr quickly and efficiently summarized the desktop review information in a critical issues analysis (CIA) document for each site. The CIAs summarized the baseline environmental conditions and informed the client of site risks and constraints. With this information in hand, we created a permit matrix to evaluate federal, state, and local permits required for each site.
Finally, Barr coordinated onsite wetland delineations and functional assessments, as well as archaeological resource surveys with tribal monitor oversight, to identify environmental/cultural considerations for permitting and regulatory requirements. This information was also used by the client to further refine project boundaries and minimize impacts to identified resources. Barr’s work will ultimately help our client construct these projects more efficiently and meet their ESG goals.