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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
California Desert District
 
Release Date: 12/29/09
Contacts: David Briery , (951) 697-5220  
  Steve Razo , (951) 697-5217  
News Release No. CA-CDD-10-25

BLM Initiates Environmental Review of Proposed Wind Energy Generation and Transmission Line Project in San Diego County


The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today, Dec. 29, 2009, published a notice of intent (NOI) to conduct an environmental review on the impacts of the proposed Tule wind energy generation project and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) transmission line project in eastern San Diego County.

Pacific Wind Development has applied to the BLM for a right-of-way (ROW) on public lands to construct a wind generation power plant facility approximately 60 miles east of San Diego, north of Interstate 8.  The project would generate 200 megawatts of wind energy and involves public lands administered by BLM, as well as private lands under county jurisdiction, state lands, and lands within the Ewiiaapaayp Indian Reservation. 

SDG&E has applied to BLM for a 1.5-mile, 100-foot wide ROW to accommodate a 138-kilovolt transmission line in support of the wind project.  The ROW is part of the application SDG&E has filed with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for the much larger East County (ECO) Substation Project.  The entire ECO project, proposed on lands under multiple ownerships, will involve a large number of facilities, including a new substation, upgrading an existing substation, and removal of another substation, among other proposals.

The environmental impact statement (EIS)/environmental impact report (EIR) will be prepared by the BLM and CPUC in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act and the California Environmental Quality Act.  The EIS/ EIR will analyze the site-specific impacts on air quality, biological, cultural and other resources.  The EIS/EIR also will analyze various options, including different sizes and numbers of wind turbines and road alignments to support the construction, maintenance, and operation of the turbines.

Publication of the NOI initiates a public-scoping period, ending Monday, Feb. 15, 2010.  During the scoping period, the BLM will solicit public comment on issues, concerns, potential impacts, alternatives, and mitigation measures to be considered in the analysis.  Joint BLM/CPUC public-scoping meetings will be held at the Jacumba Highland Center, 44681 Old Highway 80, Jacumba, CA 91934 on Jan. 27, 2010, and at the Boulevard Volunteer Fire Dept., 39223 Highway 94, Boulevard, CA 91905 on Jan. 28, 2010.  Both meetings will begin at 7 p.m.  The BLM and CPUC will use the public-scoping comments to prepare draft environmental documents to be available for public review later in 2010.

Further details on the proposed wind energy project can be found at the following website: http://www.ca.blm.gov/elcentro.  For information, contact BLM project manager Greg Thomsen at (951) 697-5237, or e-mail catulewind@blm.gov.




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

Last updated: 12-29-2009