01
February
2018
|
09:49 PM
America/New_York

For Immediate Release

Reopening DRECP would stall renewable energy goals in California

SACRAMENTO -- Today the Federal Register published a notice of intent by the Bureau of Land Management to reopen the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) for public comment and to “identify issues.”

Kim Delfino, California program director for Defenders of Wildlife, issued this statement:

“It is completely unnecessary to reopen the DRECP plan just after it was completed. The DRECP is a strong science-based plan that was the product of eight years of work, close collaboration with the state of California and local governments and was developed with extensive public outreach and comment.

“At a time when California is moving forward aggressively to meet clean energy goals, this proposal to reopen the DRECP will only result in uncertainty and delay for renewable energy projects in the California Desert. The plan provides hundreds of thousands of acres of public land for projects with an efficient permitting process. This proposal cynically throws sand in the gears in the clean energy engine built by the BLM and California.

“There is no reason to revisit the DRECP.”

Background:

The Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) is the result of a long-term collaborative effort between the state of California and the federal government.

The DRECP covers 22.5 million acres of public and private land in the desert regions and will identify 200,000 to 350,000 acres as development focus areas, which is enough to meet California renewable energy goals through 2040.

The DRECP is based on an analysis by the California Energy Commission (CEC) that used supply- and demand-side assumptions to estimate how much renewable energy—and how many acres of renewable energy development in the DRECP area—might be needed over the coming decades, taking into considering both California’s and the federal government’s renewable energy mandates.

The DRECP allows for streamlining the permitting process, making permitting projects and transmission on public land easier and faster. This will enable large-scale renewable energy projects to be built at the same time that wildlife can thrive, even in the face of climate change. The DRECP is key for California and the federal government to meet their renewable energy mandates while protecting our public lands.

Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With over 1.8 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit Newsroom.Defenders.org and follow us on Twitter @DefendersNews.