BLM initiates environmental analysis of the Jove Solar Energy Project
The public is invited to participate in upcoming virtual or in-person scoping meetings
YUMA, Ariz. — The Bureau of Land Management is kicking off its environmental analysis of the proposed Jove Solar Energy project with two public scoping meetings scheduled in January 2023. If approved, the Jove project would produce up to 600 megawatts of renewable energy from solar photovoltaic modules on 3,495 acres of public land located in southeastern La Paz County.
The BLM will hold both a virtual and in-person scoping meeting to provide information and gather feedback about the proposed project. Meeting dates and other information will be shared on the @BLMArizona Facebook and Twitter accounts, and on the project website at least 15 days prior to the meetings. Other project information, including maps, are also available on the project website, at: https://eplanning.blm.gov/eplanning-ui/project/2017881/510.
“The public’s input during scoping will help inform the BLM’s development of a range of alternatives that will be analyzed in an Environmental Impact Statement,” said Rem Hawes, acting Yuma Field Manager. “We invite our Federal, State, and local partners, Tribal Nations, stakeholders, and the public to participate in scoping.”
The analysis will evaluate potential impacts from the proposed project and address Native American religious concerns; threatened, endangered, and sensitive species; socioeconomic effects; environmental justice; and other issues. The Environmental Impact Statement will also analyze mitigation measures to lessen environmental impacts and ensure the action alternatives would not result in unnecessary or undue degradation of public lands.
The BLM manages vast stretches of public lands that have the potential to make significant contributions to the nation’s renewable energy portfolio. To promote the development of these energy sources, the BLM provides sites for environmentally sound development of renewable energy on public lands. During a visit to Arizona this week, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management Laura Daniel-Davis highlighted this project, noting that the efficient deployment of renewable energy from our nation’s public lands is crucial in achieving the Biden-Harris administration’s goal of a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035, as well as Congress’ direction in the Energy Act of 2020 to permit 25 gigawatts of solar, wind, and geothermal production on public lands no later than 2025.
The BLM manages vast stretches of public lands that have the potential to make significant contributions to the nation’s renewable energy portfolio. To promote our clean energy goals, the BLM provides sites for environmentally sound development of renewable energy on public lands and new transmission routes to
connect into the grid. These efforts to deploy renewable energy from our nation’s public lands support the Biden-Harris administration’s goal of a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035, as well as Congress’ direction in the Energy Act of 2020 to permit 25 gigawatts of solar, wind, and geothermal production on public lands no later than 2025.
The BLM is publishing a Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement to analyze the potential environmental effects of the project in the Federal Register tomorrow. The Notice also segregates public lands within the project area from location and entry under the Mining Law of 1872, subject to valid existing rights, for a period of two years. This segregation will allow for the orderly management of the public land during the environmental analysis.
Written scoping comments are encouraged and may be submitted for 30 days following the publication of the Notice or 15 days after the last public scoping meeting, whichever is later. Comments may be submitted on the project website: https://eplanning.blm.gov/eplanning-ui/project/2017881/510, or via email BLM_AZ_CRD_SOLAR@BLM.GOV. If submitting by mail, send to the BLM’s Yuma Field Office at 7341 E 30th Street, Yuma, AZ 85365, and please note “Attention: Jove Solar Project.”
Across the West, the BLM is currently processing 65 utility-scale onshore clean energy projects proposed on public lands. This includes solar, wind, and geothermal projects, as well as interconnection gen-tie lines that are vital to clean energy projects proposed on non-federal land. These projects have the combined potential to add over 31,000 megawatts of renewable energy to the western electric grid. The BLM is also undertaking the preliminary review of more than 100 applications for solar and wind development, as well as nearly 50 applications for wind and solar energy testing.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.