SAN DIEGO – Four major conservation groups today announced their support for a set of proposed large-scale solar power projects in Imperial County, Calif., because of the project meets the need to promote well-located clean energy development, demonstrate the care taken to address wildlife concerns, and create good union jobs. The Sierra Club, Audubon California, Defenders of Wildlife and the Natural Resources Defense Council all support the projects, which the Imperial County Board of Supervisors approved today.
When completed, the Mt. Signal, Calexico I and Calexico II solar projects under development by 8minutenergy will produce about 600 megawatts of electricity each year, enough to power more than 200,000 households. The projects are located on privately owned, disturbed land currently used to grow highly water-intensive landscaping grasses. The biological effects from the projects are significantly less than proposed renewable energy projects on environmentally sensitive public lands. These Imperial County projects show that it is possible to develop viable, cost-effective projects without sacrificing our precious desert wildlands.
“By choosing a project site with very few impacts to wildlife, 8minuteenergy has shown that renewable energy can be developed quickly and without sacrificing sensitive wildlife and wild lands,” said Kim Delfino, Defenders of Wildlife’s California program director. “These projects are shining examples of how to develop solar energy right.”