News Release

For Release: October 10, 2008
Contact: Stephen Razo 951-697-5217 srazo@ca.blm.gov 
CA-CDD-09-05

BLM Issues Record of Decision on Eastern San Diego County Resource Management Plan

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today issued a Record of Decision approving the Eastern San Diego County Resource Management Plan (RMP).

BLM State Director Mike Pool, who signed the decision, said it affects about 100,000 acres of public lands managed by the BLM’s El Centro Field Office in the eastern portion of San Diego County, adjacent to the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, the Cleveland National Forest, several Indian reservations, and the U.S.-Mexico border.  The RMP will provide future management guidance for use and protection of the resources in this area.   

Public involvement in the planning process began in 2004, and a draft was published in 2007. A proposed plan was released later in 2007.   Concerns were raised about wind energy restrictions, given the national focus on renewable energy and the assessment by the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory that the wind energy power potential in portions of this area are rated "excellent" to "superb."  A revised proposed plan to expand areas available for wind energy development was issued for further public review in July 2008.

The decision issued today makes about 34,300 acres available for wind energy applications. Pool emphasized BLM will require site-specific environmental review, full public involvement, and plan consistency determination for any proposed wind energy project before it could be approved.  Other key decisions in the RMP involve recreation access, designation of vehicle routes, expansion of areas to protect endangered Peninsular bighorn sheep, and provisions for reducing fuels to improve wildland fire management.

The record of decision is available online at http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/elcentro/esdrmp.html.  Paper or digital/compact disk copies of the decision are available upon request from the Field Manager, El Centro Field Office, Bureau of Land Management, 1661 S. 4th Street, El Centro, CA 92243.  For further information, please contact Erin Dreyfuss, RMP team leader at the address above, or at (760) 337-4436.
 
-BLM-
 California Desert District Office – 22835 Calle San Juan De Los Lagos, Moreno Valley, California - (951) 697-5220