The Shiloh I Wind Power Project Area is situated on roughly 6,800 acres of agricultural land in the Montezuma Hills, near Rio Vista in Solano County, California. The project consists of 100 wind turbines rated at 1.5 MW each for a total capacity of up to 150 MW. Seventy –six of the turbines are mounted on 80 meter towers and twenty-four are on 65 meter towers. These turbines are arrayed on similar landscape and habitat as that in which approximately 510 turbines of the older technology are deployed along with more than 200 turbines of the newer technology.
The Collinsville-Montezuma Hills Wind Resource Area (WRA) consists of approximately 40,300 acres of area. The current development area of the existing wind plants including Shiloh I, consists of approximately 17,300 acres. The landscape consists of rolling hills with elevations ranging between near sea level adjacent to the Sacramento River to about 250 - 300 feet (61-91 m) in elevation above sea level. Turbines are placed on the highest ground and do not run through low-lying valleys. Moving from south to north the terrain becomes more uniform with less elevation differential between the ridges and the valleys. On the west is the Suisun Marsh. The terrain is generally uniform along the east-west axis.
The land is privately owned and is largely agricultural. Where turbines and project roads are located the land use is rotating agricultural crops and grazed pastures. Crops include wheat, barley, hay, safflower and fallow fields. A multi-year rotation is the norm with wheat, fallow, and grazing alternating being the regime used most often. There are some isolated wetlands (mostly cattail marsh) and one small reservoir within the project boundaries, but these are not within the project footprint.
Treed areas within the project are limited to the areas close to homes and in a few valleys. No trees were removed to construct the project. Many of the trees are non-native eucalyptus, olive, and other species, although some native oaks and junipers are present near homes. There is a large olive grove to the east of the project area. These treed habitats provide havens and nesting substrate for birds that do not use farmland and other birds that forage in tilled fields.
This report details the results of the first two years of a three-year post-construction study of the Shiloh I wind power project. This is the third fatality study of the newer turbine technology installed in the Collinsville Montezuma Hills Wind Resource Area (CMHWRA).