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Environmental Impact Statements (EISs)

Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Proposed Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Project (P-13123-002)
Issued: January 30, 2012

Commission Staff prepared a final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the licensing of Eagle Crest Energy’s (Eagle Crest) proposed 1,300-megawatt Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Project (project). The project would be located on the site of the inactive Eagle Mountain mine, in Riverside County, California, near the town of Desert Center and would operate as a closed system and would not be located on a perennial river.

Eagle Crest used the Traditional Licensing Process and filed the license application for the proposed project on June 22, 2009. The project would occupy nearly 675.63 acres of federal land managed by BLM and an additional 1,545.63 acres of private lands. In its license application, Eagle Crest proposed measures for aquifer and seepage monitoring (and any necessary remediation for water quality and quantity), construction constraints for air quality control, limiting light pollution during project operation, and measures to protect terrestrial resources such as the federally listed desert tortoise, and the development and/or implementation of management plans that cover a range of resources, including: (a) water quality and quantity; (b) wildlife habitat enhancement; (c) vegetation; (d) wildlife; (e) recreation; (f) aesthetics; and (g) cultural resources. Commission staff evaluated Eagle Crest’s proposal and recommendations made by state and federal agencies and non-governmental organizations, in the draft EIS issued December 23, 2010. After receiving comments and oral testimony on the draft EIS, staff revised the document, as necessary, in this final EIS.

The final EIS includes Commission staff’s recommended alternative, which consists of measures included in Eagle Crest’s proposal, as well as additional recommendations made by state and federal agencies, and some measures developed by the staff.