Arizona regulators approve Southeast Power Link Project

The Arizona Corporation Commission, in a Nov. 27 order, approved a certificate of environmental compatibility (CEC) issued by the Arizona Power Plant and Transmission Line Siting Committee for Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District’s proposed Southeast Power Link Project, which is a double-circuit, 230-kV line.

The commission said that it “has balanced all relevant matters in the broad public interest, including the need for an adequate, economical and reliable supply of electric power with the desire to minimize the effect thereof on the environment and ecology of this state, and finds that granting the project a CEC is in the public interest.”

The conditions placed on the CEC resolve matters concerning the need for the project and its impact on the environment and ecology of the state raised during the course of proceedings, and as such, serve as the findings on the matters raised, the commission said.

As noted in the Sept. 17 CEC, the project includes the construction and operation of about seven miles of new 230-kV, double-circuit transmission line from the existing Santan-Browning 230-kV line to a new substation – RS-31 – located east of the Loop 202/SR-24 interchange and terminating at the permitted, future Abel-Pfister-Ball 230-kV line.

Project components are located in the City of Mesa, Ariz., the Town of Queen Creek, Ariz., and Maricopa County, Ariz. The CEC added that the line and substation are needed to support future customer needs and economic development in the Southeast region of Salt River Project’s service territory.

The approved route – referred to as the CEC route – is about seven miles long and includes the 230-kV/69-kV (RS-31). The CEC route crosses private and public lands, the CEC added, noting that the line will be built within an approximate 100-foot right of way (ROW) – some locations may vary based on final engineering and design – the location of which will be determined as set forth in the CEC.

The project is divided into four segments: the northern segment, which will originate at the existing Santan-Browning 230-kV line and end at the site of the RS-31 substation; the RS-31 substation site; the central segment, which will originate at the RS-31 substation site; and the southern segment, which will be built on a Crismon Road alignment.

The CEC is granted upon certain conditions, including that the authorization to build the project is to expire 10 years from the date the CEC is approved by the commission. Construction of the project is to be complete, such that the project is in service within that timeframe, but prior to the expiration of the time period, Salt River Project may request that the commission extend that time limitation, the CEC added.

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3058 Articles
Corina Rivera-Linares, chief editor for TransmissionHub, has covered the U.S. power industry for the past 15 years. Before joining TransmissionHub, Corina covered renewable energy and environmental issues, as well as transmission, generation, regulation, legislation and ISO/RTO matters at SNL Financial. She has also covered such topics as health, politics, and education for weekly newspapers and national magazines. She can be reached at clinares@endeavorb2b.com.