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California Desert District
Release Date: 11/06/09
Contacts: David Briery , 951-697-5220 ,
News Release No. CA-CDD-10-08

Draft Environmental Study Available for Proposed Ivanpah Solar Electric Generation System Project

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today released for public comment a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and the California Energy Commission (CEC) released a Final Staff Assessment (FSA) for the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generation Project on public land in San Bernardino County, California.

The joint DEIS/FSA is now open to public comment through February 11, 2010.  BLM and CEC will hold at least one joint public hearing/meeting on the project.  The exact date, time and location for the public meetings will be will be published on CEC and BLM web sites, and advertised in local media.  
Bright Source Energy of Oakland, CA has applied for four right-of-way authorizations to construct solar power plants on approximately 4,000 acres of public land in California about 4.5 miles southwest of Primm, Nevada.  The project would be the first commercial scale thermal solar power project constructed on public land in the United States.  It would be constructed in three phases over a three year-period.

The proposed 400 megawatt solar plant would provide enough electricity to power 320,000 homes.  The plant would use solar "power tower" technology, involving the construction of seven 459 foot tall towers.  The planned 214,000 heliostats consisting of two flat mirrors would be constructed in concentric circles around each tower to reflect the sun’s rays on a central receiver.  The tower would heat water and run steam through a turbine to generate electricity.  The electricity would be transmitted via tie lines to a new substation and into the transmission lines running through the proposed project.

BLM, as the lead agency under the National Environmental Policy Act, and CEC as the lead agency under the California Environmental Quality Act, have jointly prepared the Draft EIS/FSA which is available online at the CEC address below and by contacting BLM at the Needles Field Office, 1303 S. Highway 95, Needles, CA 92363.

A Notice of Availability in the Federal Register will be published shortly and will initiate the 90-day comment period.   BLM and the CEC will use public comments received to prepare a Final EIS in the spring of 2010, with a decision expected later in the year.
Further details can be found at the BLM renewable energy web page: and the CEC web page or by contacting Tom Hurshman, BLM Project Manager at 970-240-5345, or email


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

Last updated: 11-20-2009