SDG&E line OK’d to cross BLM land

The U.S. Department of the Interior has issued its record of decision (ROD) granting permission for a section of proposed power line to cross less than a mile of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) administered land near the border town of Jacumba, Calif., about 70 miles east of downtown San Diego in eastern San Diego County.

The portion of the transmission line that crosses BLM land will be placed underground, according to the BLM’s announcement of the ROD.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar signed the ROD Aug. 21; it was published in the Federal Register Aug. 28.

The 138-kV line, which will extend almost 14 miles, is part of San Diego Gas & Electric’s (SDG&E) East County (ECO) substation project that will ultimately connect renewable energy sources in San Diego and Imperial Counties, and in northern Mexico. When completed, the line will connect the ECO substation to the utility’s existing Boulevard substation.

The $435m project on the U.S.-Mexican border will be a crucial part of SDG&E’s network, connecting renewable energy generation facilities including the Energia Sierra Juarez wind farm in northern Baja California to the recently completed Sunrise Powerlink.

Calls seeking comment from SDG&E officials were not returned by press time Aug. 30.

SDG&E is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE:SRE).