Environmental Studies and Permits
Extensive environmental studies have been completed to assess the anticipated impacts of the Project on the landscape and surrounding areas. These studies include detailed assessments of biological, cultural, visual, air quality, water, and noise related impacts. Each of these studies and the results were presented in a Certificate for Environmental Compatibility application submitted to the Arizona Corporation Commission in September, 2011. The Arizona Corporation Commission Transmission Line Siting Committee then approved the Certificate of Environmental Compatibility in hearings in October, 2011. The Certificate of Environmental Compatibility was the approved by the Arizona Corporation Commission in an open meeting in December, 2011.
Additionally, since the project is located on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) property, the BLM prepared an Environmental Impact Statement which analyzes the Project. This Final Environmental Impact Statement became available for the public in October, 2011. Other permits from the State of Arizona and Maricopa County have been or will be applied for, as appropriate.
An integral part of the environmental permitting process is working and coordinating with the public, agencies, and special interest groups. Representatives of Sonoran Solar Energy, LLC have been in regular contact with officials from the organizations listed below throughout the development of the Project.
- Bureau of Land Management (State Office and Lower Sonoran Field Office)
- Arizona Congressional Delegation representatives
- Arizona Corporation Commission
- Arizona Department of Water Resources
- Arizona Department of Environmental Quality
- Arizona Game and Fish Department
- Maricopa County
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
- Town of Buckeye
- Buckeye Chamber of Commerce
- City of Goodyear
- Environmental Organizations
- Local Citizens Organizations
Sonoran Solar Energy, LLC hosted a series of public meetings in Buckeye, AZ in April, 2010, to allow interested citizens the opportunity to review and comment on the Project, environmental studies, and the Certificate of Environmental Compatibility process. Since then, Sonoran Solar Energy, LLC has continued to reach out to local government officials and local citizen organizations to provide Project updates. The Arizona Corporation Commission Line Siting Committee held additional public meetings to discuss the Project in October, 2011.
Additionally, as part of their environmental review process, the BLM hosted a series of public meetings following the release of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement in April 2010. The public was then provided with a 90-day period to submit comments on the Project. After the release of the Final Environmental Impact Statement in October, 2011 the public was provided with an additional 30-day period to provide BLM with any final concerns on the Project.
For more information, call Devin Petry, Environmental Project Manager at 602-956-4370.