Black Hills Energy is proposing to construct a 39-mile 115kV transmission line that starts in Pueblo West and traverses west toward Cañon City. The project is needed to support electric system load growth in the region and to maintain safe, reliable service for our customers in the Pueblo West, Penrose and Canon City communities.
Our area has a growing power demand
High peak period demand for electricity in Cañon City and surrounding areas has placed additional stress on the electric transmission system.
Reliability is key
The new transmission line will help meet today’s needs for additional transmission capacity while also enabling future distribution substations to maintain system reliability in the Cañon City, Penrose and Pueblo West communities.
We are building a transmission line
Black Hills Energy is building a 115 kilovolt (kV) transmission line. It is a high voltage line that transmits and distributes electrical energy over great distances. Transmission lines are used to reduce the energy loss that can occur over long distances.
When completed, the 115 kV line will have poles 65 to 75 feet above ground and will generally use H frame structures to support the lines in a 125-foot-wide right-of-way corridor.
We looked at many variables
We looked for a route to meet the needs of the transmission system while also considering the local, physical and technological constraints. Many different variables were considered and Black Hills Energy consulted with representatives from Fort Carson, the Bureau of Land Management, and landowners in the area. Black Hills Energy also reviewed alternative routes to assess whether they met the purpose and need of the project, and attempted to follow the route of existing transmission lines or other infrastructure to reduce environmental impacts. The alternative routes considered presented additional environmental, and/or technical challenges.
Safety is our first priority
Our first priority is always public safety, employee safety and contractor safety. Black Hills Energy crews are fully trained and equipped to work safely in all types of terrain. We take a proactive approach, with daily safety meetings, careful monitoring and sharing safety tips with landowners.
Black Hills Energy will operate the transmission line in accordance with all local, state and federal requirements.
Please use your mouse to click and zoom to see route details in the maps below.Pueblo West Routing Street Map Pueblo County Project Overview Map
Analysis of the Proposed Line
Black Hills performed an analysis to determine EMF levels from the proposed transmission line at the edge of the right-of-way.
COLORADO PUC LIMIT FOR EMF150mG
EMF FOR PROPOSED LINE*36mG
- All transmission lines produce low frequency electromagnetic fields.
- Electromagnetic fields are strongest directly under the lines and drop dramatically as you move away.
*EMF for proposed line where it is adjacent to WAPA line is 90 mG (All mG are measured at edge of right-of-way)
|Magnetic Field 6 inches from appliance (mG)||Magnetic fields 2 feet away (mG)||
Note: Dash (--) means that the magnetic field at this distance from the operating appliance could not be distinguished from background measurements taken before the appliance had been turned on.
Source: National Institute of Environmental Health Services / National Institutes of Health: EMF Associated with the Use of Electric Power
What is EMF?
The voltage on an electrical wire is caused by electric charges that can exert forces on other nearby charges, and this force is called an “electric field” (E). When charges move they produce an electric current that can exert forces on other electric currents, and this force between electric currents is called a “magnetic field” (M). Together, electric and magnetic fields are called EMF.
What else in my home or office produces comparable or higher mG of EMF?
Many children’s toys contain magnets and many of us use refrigerator magnets, generating fields of about 100,000 to 500,000 mG.
An increasingly common diagnostic procedure, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), uses fields of about 20,000,000 mG.
Do underground lines reduce EMF levels?
NO. In fact, underground lines can produce higher levels of magnetic fields directly above the line at ground level because these lines are located closer to you (5 feet below) compared to overhead lines (25 to 30 feet above).
Are there state or federal standards for EMF exposure?
There are no federal standards limiting residential or occupational EMF exposure. Several states have set standards for the allowed level of magnetic fields from new power lines. The Colorado Public Utilities Commission has determined that magnetic fields for new power lines of 150 mG or less are reasonable at the edge of the right of way.