CapX2020 plan draws crowd in Holmen

HOLMEN — The latest meeting on the proposed CapX2020 transmission line was nearing its end when a woman shouted from the back of the room.

“I’m sorry, but isn’t it safer to build underground than overhead?” Brenda Herman asked. Twice.

Both methods are safe, said Tom Hillstrom, Xcel Energy’s permitting leader for the Hampton to Rochester, Minn., segment of the proposed 150-mile line.

But burying the lines would cost far more, about $20 million a mile.

Advocates and opponents of the 345-kilovolt line that would stretch from Hampton to a new substation in Holmen, crossing the Mississippi River at Alma, had been invited to Holmen High School on Monday evening for an informational session organized by state Rep. Steve Doyle, who lives in the nearby town of Onalaska.

by Betsy Bloom, La Crosse Tribune, January 31, 2012 click for details

CapX2020 Public Information Meeting held in Holmen

Holmen, WI (WXOW)– A public information meeting on the controversial CapX2020 project was held in Holmen Monday night.

Attendees heard presentations from Xcel Energy and the Citizens Energy Task Force, who opposes the project.

Representative Steve Doyle acted as the moderator for the meeting, which will provided details about the proposal for the 150 mile long power line. The power line would run from Hampton, MN to the La Crosse area.

By Kristen Barbaresi, WXOW, January 30, 2012 click for details

SAVE THIS DATE! 1/30/2012 —Major Community Meeting—



CapX2020 Information Meeting-hosted by State Rep. Doyle


WHEN:  Monday, January 30, 2012; 6:00 to 7:30 pm


WHERE: Holmen High School Commons Area

                1001 McHugh Road; Holmen, WI (at Briggs Road)


WHAT:  Information about Capx2020 Project.


Presenters: CapX 2020 and Citizens Energy Task Force


Format: Presentations will be 20 minutes each followed by responses to questions written on 4 X 6 cards. Questions will be sorted to avoid duplicates. There will be no verbal questions or statements.


Wisconsin Ponders Power Lines

by Sarah Squires, Winona Post, January 10, 2012

Power line towers that rival the height of the Statue of Liberty are being constructed across Minnesota, expected to cross the Mississippi River in Alma, Wis. But where they go from there is still up in the air, with permitting from Wisconsin not yet secure and two routes still on the table: one that would follow existing lines along the Great River Road south to La Crosse, another that would head inland to Arcadia and then run south.

CapX2020 is a joint initiative of 11 transmission-owning utilities in Minnesota and the surrounding region, adding 345kV lines from Brookings, South Dakota across Minnesota to La Crosse, Wis. The lines will eventually connect to the Badger Coulee line to Madison and then to other lines that head to Chicago and farther east. Project advocates say the new power lines are needed to meet future energy demands in the area, and will include renewable energy sources to help meet Minnesota’s renewable energy standard, requiring 25 percent of electricity to come from renewable sources by 2025.

But a growing group of concerned residents has been organizing in opposition to the project. Some worry that the new power lines — 150 feet tall — will impact the scenic Great River Road, mar the bluffs on the Wisconsin side and harm the sensitive environments along the Mississippi River. Others don’t want to give up their land or homes to eminent domain for the project and worry about declining property values, and still others believe the lines aren’t needed, and are really an attempt to bring coal power from the Dakotas to the eastern part of the country, while asking rate payers in Minnesota and Wisconsin to foot the bill.

Click for details