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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
California Desert District
 
Release Date: 12/01/09
Contacts: David Briery , 951-697-5220  
  Steve Razo , 951-697-5217  
News Release No. CA-CDD-10-19

BLM and Energy Commission to Hold Public Workshop on Ridgecrest Solar Project


The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the California Energy Commission (CEC) are inviting the public to a public workshop on Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2009, to discuss Solar Millennium’s proposed Ridgecrest Solar Power Project in Kern County near Ridgecrest, Calif. The workshop offers the agencies and the public a forum to obtain detailed information about the proposed project from its proponent, as well as an opportunity for the agencies and public to comment on issues regarding the proposed project.

All interested agencies and members of the public are invited to participate. The joint CEC/BLM workshop will be held:

 Tuesday, December 15, 2009
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Ridgecrest City Hall
100 West California Avenue
Ridgecrest, CA 93555 

Solar Millennium LLC has applied to the BLM for a right-of-way on public lands to construct a 250-megawatt (MW) dry-cooling, parabolic trough, solar thermal, electric power plant facility. The project site is located on both sides of Brown Road, southwest of Highway 395, approximately five miles southwest of the City of Ridgecrest and is proposed to begin construction Dec. 1, 2010 if approved by the BLM and CEC. Related structures would include an administration building, parking area, power block switchyard, bioremediation area, wastewater treatment facility, onsite access and maintenance roads, and perimeter fencing. Connected facilities would include the construction of a water pipeline and the relocation of two Southern California Edison transmission lines.
 
The BLM is currently reviewing Solar Millennium’s proposed plan of development and jointly reviewing its application for certification that has been submitted to the CEC for the proposed development of the project. The topics that will be discussed during the workshop are project alternatives, biological resources, soil and water resources, and streambed-alteration designs. Additional public workshops will be announced to discuss various aspects of the project and allow opportunities for public comment on the proposed project.
 
The BLM, under federal law, is responsible for processing requests for rights-of-way to authorize such proposed projects and associated transmission lines and other appurtenant facilities on land it manages. 
 
As the lead agency under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the CEC is responsible for reviewing, approving or denying all applications to construct and operate thermal electric power plants, 50 MW and greater, in California. The CEC facility certification process carefully examines public health and safety environmental impacts and engineering aspects of proposed power plants and all related facilities, such as electric transmission lines and water pipelines. 
 
Further details of this project can be found at: www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/ridgecrest.html and www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases/solar_millennium_ridgecrest/index.html.   For additional information contact Janet Eubanks, BLM project manager at carspp@blm.gov or Eric Solorio, CEC project manager at (916) 651-0966 or e-mail at esolorio@energy.state.ca.us.



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California Desert District   22835 Calle San Juan de Los Lagos, Moreno Valley, CA 92553  

Last updated: 12-17-2009