Interior approves transmission line for 250MW solar project in California

Source: US Department of the Interior

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has approved a transmission line on public lands that will connect a 250-megawatt solar power project to the energy grid in California. The transmission line will connect to the Imperial Solar Energy Center West Project in Imperial County that, when constructed, will generate power for more than 75,000 homes. 

Proposed by CSOLAR Development, LLC, the project is expected to create up to 285 jobs during construction and infuse up to $5 million in sales tax revenue to the local government. 

“Through smart siting of projects, early environmental review and a coordinated approval process, Interior is helping to stand up a renewable energy economy, spurring innovation, job-creation, and investment in the private sector,” Secretary Salazar said. “When constructed, this solar project will add to a growing, sustainable energy strategy that will power our local communities and economies.”

The above-ground 230 kilovolt transmission line will carry power five miles to the existing Imperial Valley Substation and will be located on 65 acres of Interior-managed lands. 

“The solar project itself will be constructed on private, fallowed farm lands near El Centro,” said Bureau of Land Management Director Bob Abbey. “This transmission line will be placed in an area already designated as a transmission corridor. The entire project is sited in a perfect spot for renewable energy development in the California desert.” 

Earlier this month, Salazar approved the Desert Sunlight Solar Farm, a 550-megawatt project also in the California desert, and in July, he approved two utility-scale solar developments in the state, a wind energy project in Oregon, and a transmission line in Southern California. Together the four 2011 solar projects will create more than 2,215 construction jobs and provide a combined 1,350 megawatts of electricity. 


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