The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is issuing a final environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Maricopa Sun Solar Complex Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP).
The service said in a notice to be published in the Dec. 8 Federal Register that the final EIS was updated to address the comments received on the 2014 draft EIS and considers the environmental effects of issuing an incidental take permit for five animal species in response to the application from Maricopa Sun LLC. The EIS covers the construction, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning of an up to 700-MW photovoltaic power generating facility and implementation of conservation actions associated with the HCP in Kern County, California.
A Record of Decision on the final EIS will be signed no sooner than 30 days after the publication date of this notice.
Construction of the project will occur in a series of approximately 1-MW blocks, generally consisting of 5 to 8.64 acres each. It is anticipated that construction of each section (640 acres) within the Maricopa Sun Solar Complex will take 12 to 18 months. Operation-related activities could include solar panel maintenance, on-site parking, operation of solar modules, inspection, and repair of equipment, and operation of lighting