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Community meeting on industrial energy projects proposed in East County  

Credit:  By Miriam Raftery | January 17, 2013 | East County Magazine | eastcountymagazine.org ~~

Two nonprofit groups, Protect Our Communities Foundation and Backcountry Against Dumps, will convene a community meeting Thursday, January 24, 2013 to inform residents about planned industrial conversation of Boulevard and surrounding areas.  A dozen or so big energy corporations—most from outside the region–seek to push through zoning changes to allow massive projects that would forever transform this now-rural area. 

“Learn about the many industrial scale wind, solar, and related transmission line projects planned in and around our residential neighborhoods (on public, private, and tribal lands), adversely impacting many homes,” a flyer for the event states, “and what you can do to help protect and defend your family, your property, your future.”

The meeting will be held at the Boulevard Fire Station Equipment Bay, 39923 Ribbonwood Road, Boulevard 91905 (northeast corner of Old Highway 80 and Ribbonwood Road) from 7 to 9 p.m. on January 24.

Corporations seeking to build energy projects in the area include  SDG&E, Iberdrola Renewables, Enel Green Power, Invenergy, Soitec Solar, Sol Orchard, Hamann Companies, Pattern Energy, Sempra, Amonix, BP Solar & others.

Federal and state initiatives to curb global warming have led to fast-tracking of projects and designations of some areas as energy zones, including the southeast portion of East County.  But the projects pose many serious concerns, including the following items listed by the nonprofit groups organizing the event:

Main issues/concerns:

  •  Over 800 MW (million watts) planned for export to cities at our expense.
  •  Increased risk of wildfire ignition; interference with fire fighting; increased insurance rates or cancellation; potential impacts to groundwater.
  •  Negative health impacts from noise, low-frequency noise and electrical pollution emissions that have been found around existing wind turbines, large solar installations, transmission lines, and substations; heat island and dust impacts: People, pets, livestock, and wildlife will be impacted.
  •  Negative impacts to power quality and reliability (surges, brownouts, EMI)
  •  Loss of property values, quality of life, sense of place, visual, cultural, historic, recreation, and biological resources.
  •  Public participation opportunities and potential lawsuit options
  •  Disproportionate negative impacts to rural low-income area.
  •  Point-of-use renewable energy alternatives where energy is consumed.
  •  Opportunity to share your personal experiences with existing wind turbines, large-scale solar projects, substations, power lines.

For more information: Contact Donna Tisdale at 619-766-4170 or tisdale.donna@gmail.com Donations to fund efforts by the nonprofits, which have fought past projects in court, can be sent to BAD, PO Box 1275, Boulevard, CA 91905

Source:  By Miriam Raftery | January 17, 2013 | East County Magazine | eastcountymagazine.org

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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