Lava Ridge Wind Farm encroaches on Minidoka Historical site

Update, August 2022: Act now to project the Minidoka National Historic site! The National Trust for Historic Preservation and Friends of Minidoka are asking people to contact the Bureau of Land Management and urge them to suspend their review of the Lava Wind Ridge Project and instead engage in a public process. They have set up a quick and easy way for you to do that:

Originally published April, 2022.

The Minidoka National Historic Site in the high desert of south-central Idaho is significant to the history of many Japanese Americans in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest–it was where many of their ancestors (or they themselves) were forcibly removed after Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 in 1942. Part of the National Park Service, the site serves multiple purposes for Japanese Americans and the general public–as a sacred site of reflection and remembrance and as an educational tool for learning about racism, civil liberties, the US during WWII, and the history of violence against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States.

Magic Valley Energy has proposed the Lava Ridge Wind Project, a 400-unit wind turbine field on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) property adjacent to the Minidoka National Historic Site. The project would include 400 wind towers, over a dozen of which would be located on the historic footprint of the Minidoka incarceration camp. For visitors to the site, this would effectively create a wall of towers and spinning blades that would dominate 114 degrees of the park’s 360 degree view.

Friends of Minidoka, which engages in and supports education, research, and historic preservation of the WWII incarceration experience, has led the effort to oppose the impact of the Lava Ridge Wind Project on Minidoka. We stand with Friends of Minidoka to object to the project as it is currently proposed because it will significantly and permanently alter the landscape and atmosphere of the site.

What has happened so far?

August 2021: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced its Notice of Intent for Lava Ridge.

September 2021: The BLM hosted 2 virtual meetings to explain the project and take questions. They also accepted public comment on the project through September 20. More than 1,000 people submitted comments.

June 2022: The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the project is still in progress. The BLM currently anticipates the Notice of Availability for the Draft EIS will be published in the Fall of 2022.

August 2022: The National Trust for Historic Preservation and Friends of Minidoka urge people to contact the BLM and request that they suspend their review of the project. Instead, they would like to see a public process for revising the Monument Resource Management Plan, which would strengthen protections for monuments such as Minidoka and change the way they are managed.

You can read more about the project and the opposition to its impact here: