Don’t Blow It: Texas Leaders Unite in Support of Thoughtful Regulation of Wind Energy Development

Statewide initiative reveals environmental, cultural and economic implications of wind energy encroachment to iconic landscapes

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS (January 24, 2018) – The Devils River Conservancy (DRC), is a community of people committed to treasuring, preserving and protecting the Devils River, the last wild and pristine river in Texas, its springs and the lands within its watershed in Val Verde County. Recently, 140,000 acres of land in the Devils River Basin and in close proximity to Laughlin Air Force Base, were purchased by foreign industrialists with plans for wind farm development. In response, the DRC has launched the “Don’t Blow It” campaign to advocate for thoughtful regulation of wind energy development.

For years, Texas has led the United States in wind-powered generation capacity. While the DRC recognizes the value and importance of renewable energy, it urges Texans to “Don’t Blow It” by placing renewable energy in locations that negatively impact the state’s few remaining unspoiled landscapes, ecologically and culturally significant areas, military operations, border security or the communities that depend on these assets.

“Wind energy infrastructure requires disturbance of a significant amount of land per megawatt generated; more than most other alternative energy sources,” said Ralph Duggins, Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission chair. “Now is the time to shape the future for renewable energy development in Texas and protect iconic, wildscapes like the Val Verde County river basins for future generations. As our population continues to grow and wild places diminish, we need to develop by design and encourage the wind energy industry to utilize appropriate locations and save wild Texas.”

Texas leaders supporting the initiative acknowledge the permanent landscape scars and adverse affects wind energy infrastructure has on: The limited public parklands in Texas Laughlin Air Force Base Border security operations

“The Lower Pecos and Devils River country represents one of the last true bastions of wildness in our state. The region is home to an abundance of rare and unique species, spectacularly clear, and clean, spring-fed waters, and stunning vistas that have largely gone undisturbed for generations. Thanks to the longstanding stewardship of the area ranch families, private landowners, and conservation organizations, the area is without a doubt cherished by residents and visitors as one of Texas’ most special places,” said Carter Smith, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) executive director. “For decades, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has proudly been a part of those efforts with its ownership of public lands like Seminole Canyon and the Devils River State Natural Area. Protecting the biological health and integrity of the lower Pecos and Devils River watersheds, as well as conserving the area’s wide-open spaces and dark skies, are fundamental to our work there, now and to come. Proposals to further intensively develop the area surrounding the Devil’s River run counter to many of the values that ranchers and conservationists, biologists and outdoor enthusiasts alike have labored long and hard to protect. The vision championed by landowners and groups like the Devils River Conservancy to protect and pass on the intrinsic character and wildness of the region is fully supported by TPWD.”

“Wind farms in Val Verde County pose an attendant threat to military training airspace, border security operations and public parklands,” said Skip Baker, Military Affairs Association president. “Responsible consideration of location must be considered in renewable energy development. Wind turbines create airspace hazards and compromise air traffic safety for Laughlin Air Force pilots at the largest training program in the U.S. by interfering with radio signals, potentially reducing their number of effective training days.”

Wind farms are heavily supported by government subsidies, paid by U.S. taxpayer dollars. In addition, the closer wind farm developments are to our borders, the greater threat they pose to the Department of Homeland Security’s ability to effectively secure our nation.

To learn more about Don’t Blow It and ways to support protection of the wild side of Texas, please visit,


ABOUT DEVILS RIVER CONSERVANCY The Devils River Conservancy, a 501 (c)3 organization committed to treasuring, preserving and protecting the Devils River, its springs and the lands within its water catchment area. The Devils River is a place many consider to be the last pristine river in Texas. Through education, research and advocacy, the DRC is on a mission to ensure the river’s clean, clear waters and springs will continue to flow according to their historical and natural regimes for future generations. To learn more about the Devils River Conservancy, visit To find out how you can help protect Val Verde County’s unique natural and scenic treasures from wind farm encroachment, visit