BLM announces availability of final environmental analysis for Palen Solar Photovoltaic Project

A desert landscape with vegetation and fence and with mountains in the distance. BLM photo.MORENO VALLEY, Calif. – The Bureau of Land Management announced the availability of the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement and Environmental Impact Report and California Desert Conservation Area Land Use Plan Amendment for a proposed solar project in Riverside County.

The Final SEIS/EIR provides a comprehensive analysis of potential environmental impacts for the proposed 500 megawatt Palen Solar Project and LUPA on public lands in eastern Riverside County. 

The Palen Solar Project is consistent with the Trump Administration’s priority of pursuing energy independence, while improving infrastructure and creating jobs in local economies. The project is estimated to employ approximately 1,145 individuals during the project’s peak, with an average construction-related, on-site workforce of more than 550 individuals, and provide enough energy to power about 130,000 homes.

“The BLM is committed to supporting responsible energy development that stabilizes the grid and strengthens the nation’s energy infrastructure,” said Beth Ransel, BLM California Desert District Manager. “We welcome opportunities to help make public lands work for local communities.”

A major component will be a change in the previously proposed technology to the pending right-of-way application that proposes solar photovoltaic technology, not the previously proposed power tower configuration. The Palen Solar Project would now include a main generation area, on-site substation, switchyard, site security, a 230 kV generation-tie line, and an operations and maintenance facility potentially onsite.

The Notice of Availability for the Final SEIS/EIR and proposed LUPA will publish in the Federal Register on May 21 and opens a 30-day protest period as well as a governor’s consistency review. The BLM is the lead federal agency for the National Environmental Policy Act review, and Riverside County is the lead agency for the California Environmental Quality Act review. Pending the outcome of those processes, the BLM will issue a Record of Decision.

Information about the project, along with the agency preferred alternative and instructions for filing a protest, is available online at: https://eplanning.blm.gov/epl-front-office/eplanning/planAndProjectSite.do?methodName=renderDefaultPlanOrProjectSite&projectId=68122.

Printed and digital copies of the Final SEIS/EIR and proposed amendments are also available at the following locations: BLM, Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office, 1201 Bird Center Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92262
BLM, California Desert District Office, 22835 Calle San Juan de Los Lagos, Moreno Valley, CA  92553

For further information, please contact Stephen Razo, Public Affairs Officer, 951-697-5217, or email srazo@blm.gov.

This year, we invite everyone to reimagine your public lands as we celebrate 75 years of the BLM’s stewardship and service to the American people. The BLM manages approximately 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. 

Release Date

Organization

Bureau of Land Management, California

Office

California Desert District Office

Contacts

Name:
Stephen Razo
Email:
Phone: