Landmark Plan for Conservation and Renewable Energy Development in California Announced

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Posted: Tuesday, September 23, 2014 8:20 pm | Updated: 8:27 pm, Tue Sep 23, 2014.

LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- The U.S. Department of the Interior and the California Department of Natural Resources released a first-of-its-kind plan for conservation and renewable energy development in the California desert.

The draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan is a combined state and federal effort, including collaborations between the Bureau of Land Management, the California Energy Commission, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the result of a public process that the Natural Resources Defense Council, fellow conservation groups, renewable energy companies and other stakeholders have been engaged in for more than four years.

The draft of the long-awaited DRECP is an unprecedented opportunity to provide a framework for “smart from the start” planning efforts that guide renewable energy development to areas with low environmental and wildlife risk, and conserve the desert’s wildlife, wilderness and treasures landscapes.

“This process has set an important and useful precedent, and we look forward to reviewing the document," said Helen O’Shea, Director of NRDC’s Western Renewable Energy Project. "If designed and administered correctly, this landmark effort can provide a blueprint for responsible renewable energy development while safeguarding the desert’s special places and species. And it can play a critical role in our efforts to fight climate change and develop a sustainable clean energy future.”

SOURCE: Natural Resources Defense Council

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