(1) A decommissioning plan must include:

(a) a commitment to remove all aboveground wind turbines and towers;

(b) as-built plans, including general structural and electrical information, relative to the calculation of the bond for all facilities and all disturbances associated with the facility. The as-built plans must include an affidavit signed by an owner or any person authorized to act on the owner's behalf attesting to the completeness and accuracy of the as-built plans or be certified by a professional engineer that the as-built plans are complete and accurate. The department may allow redaction, the filing of a less detailed plan, or treatment of all or a portion of the plan as confidential information if the owner demonstrates to the department's satisfaction that the information or plan may be protected pursuant to 2-6-1003, MCA;

(c) a detailed estimate of the cost of decommissioning the facility with supporting calculations;

(d) any agreement(s) signed by all landowners and facility owners providing for alternative reclamation or the non-removal of buildings, cabling, electrical components, roads or any associated facilities. The agreement may be specific to decommissioning or it may be a more general agreement with specific provision relating to decommissioning. A general agreement may contain redactions to protect information that is not necessary for the department's review;

(e) a description of the manner in which the facility will be decommissioned and a proposed decommissioning schedule, which, except as provided in (1)(d), must include:

(i) dismantling and removal of all overhead electrical transmission lines and structures, transformers, buildings, and all other ancillary equipment and debris from operation of the facility that is not associated with interconnecting the facility into the electric grid;

(ii) removal of all underground cables and pipelines to a depth of 24 inches or deeper if necessary for the post operation land use;

(iii) removal of wind turbine and solar foundations and other concrete foundations and slabs to a minimum depth of 36 inches below natural grade or an alternative depth as approved by the department if appropriate for the post operation land use;

(iv) reclamation of the facility site to the approximate original surface topography that existed prior to the start of the construction of the facility with grading, topsoil application over the disturbed areas at a depth similar to that in existence prior to the disturbance, reseeding, and revegetation to achieve the same utility as the surrounding area at the time of decommissioning to prevent adverse hydrological effects;

(v) repair and reconstruction from damage to public roads, culverts and natural drainage ways resulting directly from operation of or decommissioning of the facility; and

(vi) removal and grading of all access roads to pre-construction or natural grade as appropriate;

(f) a detailed estimate of the current salvageable value of the facility by an evaluator who is not an employee of the owner; and

(g) an estimate of all other expenses related to decommissioning that are the responsibility of the owner.


History: 75-26-310, MCA; IMP, 75-26-304, MCA; NEW, 2018 MAR p. 94, Eff. 1/13/18; AMD, 2020 MAR p. 957, Eff. 5/30/20.