Sherman & D’Ambrosio: First Phase of CA Energy Plan is Finalized

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Stoel Rives attorneys Michael Sherman and Kate D’Ambrosio authored an article for the San Francisco Daily Journal titled “Renewable energy plan is finally complete.” The article discusses the implementation of the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP), which is the end result of a 2008 commitment by several state and federal agencies to develop a comprehensive means to permit renewable energy projects in the California desert. 

The DRECP has two phases, the first of which was completed in mid-September with the approval by the BLM of a Land Use Plan Amendment. The amendment, which will affect 10.8 million acres of public lands in the California desert, will restrict development on large areas of those lands, prioritize select areas for renewable energy development and establish rigorous mitigation standards to protect biological resources. 

In the second phase of the DRECP, federal and state agencies involved in the plan will work with seven Southern California counties to bring local land use policies more nearly into alignment with the plan’s renewable energy and conservation goals. 

The authors state that uncertainty exists as to whether and how quickly the alignment will occur but end on a hopeful note: “One thing is certain, though: despite the BLM’s decision to restrict renewable energy development on vast areas of public lands, the future of renewable energy in California still remains bright,” they write. “California’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and its mandate to meet 50 percent of its energy needs from renewable energy sources by 2030 will continue to drive renewable energy project development in the California desert.” 

Read “Renewable energy plan is finally complete,” published by the San Francisco Daily Journal September 16, 2016. (Subscription required.)

Key Contributors

Kate D'Ambrosio
Michael J. Sherman
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