FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 18, 2012
|Sarah Bray||Jen Neville|
CENTENNIAL WEST CLEAN LINE, WESTERN SIGN AGREEMENT FOR TRANSMISSION PROJECT DEVELOPMENT
HOUSTON (June 18, 2012) –Centennial West Clean Line LLC, an affiliate of Clean Line Energy Partners LLC, and Western Area Power Administration have entered into an advance funding agreement that outlines a working relationship to advance the development of the proposed Centennial West Clean Line Transmission Project.
The proposed project would deliver 3,500 megawatts of renewable power from northeastern New Mexico to communities in California and other areas in the West, transported via an almost 900-mile overhead high-voltage direct current, or HVDC, transmission line. Due to its low electricity losses and smaller footprint, HVDC transmission is the most efficient and cost effective technology to move large amounts of electricity across long distances. The project will include an intermediate converter station in Mohave County, Ariz., to access the state’s abundant solar resource.
Western will serve as a joint lead agency with BLM in preparing the EIS for the proposed project. Centennial West will fund the costs related to the NEPA compliance work and Western’s review and due diligence of the proposed project. The agreement covers the development period of the proposed project, after which it is anticipated that both Western and Clean Line will evaluate the project’s progress. Centennial West will then determine whether it should request funding from Western’s Transmission Infrastructure Program for the use of borrowing authority.
Western’s Acting Administrator Tony Montoya stated, “Improving our nation’s transmission infrastructure is important for meeting the growing demand for renewable energy in the western United States. This agreement with Centennial West allows us to support the development of the proposed project, using Western’s expertise.”
Clean Line President Michael Skelly said, “We are glad to partner with Western in the development, technical studies and environmental review process of the Centennial West Clean Line project. This collaboration demonstrates the benefit of private and government entities working together to build new clean energy projects, create American jobs and give consumers in the West low-cost renewable energy options.” He continued by stating, “We look forward to continuing to create opportunities for more renewable energy and to working with federal, state, tribal authorities and community leaders as the Centennial West Clean Line progresses.”
John Shepard, Senior Advisor for the Sonoran Institute, said, “We are pleased with the news on the development of the Centennial West Clean Line. Clean Line has demonstrated an admirable commitment to meaningful public engagement and has conveyed a strong signal that they are serious about setting a new standard for transmission siting. We look forward to continued conversation and collaboration on the proposed Centennial West Clean Line project.”
In January 2011, Clean Line submitted an application for right-of-way across Federal lands and a preliminary Plan of Development to the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. This served as the first step toward completion of an Environmental Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969.
Find more about the proposed project at http://www.centennialwestcleanline.com/site/home.
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About Clean Line Energy Partners: Clean Line’s mission is to connect abundant, renewable energy resources to communities and cities that have a high demand for clean, reliable energy. Clean Line is developing a series of high-voltage direct current transmission projects to move renewable energy to market. For more information please visit www.CleanLineEnergy.com.
About Western Area Power Administration: Western annually markets and transmits more than 10,000 megawatts of clean, renewable power from hydroelectric powerplants owned and operated by the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 15 western and central states. It is part of the Department of Energy. For more information about Western, please visit http://www.wapa.gov.