SAN FRANCISCO, March 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Pattern Energy Group LP (Pattern) today announced that the Federal District Court for the Southern District of California ruled in favor of the Ocotillo Wind project and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in two separate suits before the Court.
The Court granted Pattern’s and the BLM’s summary judgment motions in a case brought by the Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation and in a separate case brought by several other parties, including the Desert Protective Council.
In issuing its decisions the Court denied the challenges to the Ocotillo project and dismissed each of the many claims that had been asserted against the project by the plaintiffs. The Court concluded that the BLM and Pattern conducted thorough studies of the effects of the project and had adopted appropriate mitigation measures to avoid or minimize the project’s impact. This decision is the latest in a string of favorable rulings issued by the federal court rejecting challenges to the Ocotillo Wind project.
“We are pleased with the Federal Court’s decisions,” said Mike Garland, CEO of Pattern Energy. “These rulings confirmed that we and the BLM followed the rules, working with Native American tribes, community groups and local residents during the development process. We remain committed to building a renewable energy project responsive to the concerns of the local community and respectful of the environment and local cultural resources.”
“We appreciate Pattern Energy’s commitment to collaborate with us and make the Imperial Valley part of the process of developing a world-class wind project,” said Ray Castillo, Chairman of the Imperial County Board of Supervisors. “The sustained economic support from the Ocotillo Wind Project will address some of our community’s greatest needs, creating positive impacts on current and future generations of Imperial Valley residents.”
The Ocotillo Wind project, a 265 megawatt (MW) wind power project in Imperial Valley, has 94 turbines that are operational. The remaining 18 turbines will be installed in the spring. Once fully operational, the Ocotillo Wind project will provide enough clean and renewable energy to power nearly 125,000 homes in Southern California each year.
Ocotillo Wind is the first renewable energy project to transmit power over the Sunrise Powerlink transmission line, which connects San Diego with the Imperial Valley – one of the most renewable-rich regions in California. San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) and the California Independent System Operator Corporation (ISO), the agency that manages most of the statewide grid, consider the Sunrise Powerlink one of the important mitigation measures that will help maintain electric reliability during heat waves.
Nearly 70% of the Ocotillo Wind project was ‘made in America,’ utilizing 112 Siemens wind towers, blades and nacelles that were manufactured in the United States. More than 500 jobs were created during the construction of the project, which utilized many workers and subcontractors from the local region. Ocotillo Wind will also generate substantial tax revenues over the next 30 years, benefiting Imperial County and local schools, among others.
Ocotillo Wind is Pattern’s sixth operational wind project, bringing the Company’s total to more than 1000 MW of installed wind power capacity. Pattern expects to bring a number of wind projects into construction over the next 12 months.
Pattern Energy Group LP is an independent, fully-integrated energy company that develops, constructs, owns, and operates renewable energy and transmission assets in the United States, Canada and Latin America. With a long history in wind energy, Pattern’s highly-experienced team of scientists, engineers, construction experts, and legal and financial professionals has developed, financed and placed into operation more than 2,500 MW of wind power projects. A strong commitment to promoting environmental stewardship drives the Company’s dedication to work closely with landowners and communities to create premier renewable energy projects. Pattern currently operates approximately 1000 MW of installed wind energy capacity in North America and Puerto Rico. The Company’s full development pipeline exceeds 3,000 MW of renewable energy and transmission projects. Pattern has offices in San Francisco, San Diego, Houston, New York, and Toronto. For more information please visit www.patternenergy.com