There continue to be comments regarding the “lower cost” of the western route alternative to building the new 500 kilovolt lines in east Clark County.
This is short-sighted and these comments only look at the initial up-front costs.
Placing the new lines adjacent to the old lines poses serious potential risk for total power failure to the whole of the Northwest, California and Canada.
Any unforeseen but realistic natural or human-created disaster (hurricane, airplane crash, terrorist attack) on these parallel towers would not only cost exponentially more but create human turmoil seen in other similar situations.
The most recent scenario was when Superstorm Sandy shut down the NYU Langone Medical Center in Manhattan, N.Y. The backup generator was in the same building as the main power generator and both were disabled, resulting in the evacuation of hundreds of patients and over a billion dollars of unforeseen expense.
Separating the 500 kv lines from the current towers may initially cost more than the current supposed savings, but it makes logical sense when considering the multiple costs and devastation that is a realistic catastrophic potential.