Environment & Science

Next steps for desert renewable energy planning: public meetings

The Clark Mountain Range at Mojave National Preserve is located near the California-Nevada border.
The Clark Mountain Range at Mojave National Preserve is located near the California-Nevada border.
Stock Photo Maya Sugarman/KPCC

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Last month, state and federal officials released a plan to carve out more than 3,100 square miles of desert for projects like solar arrays and wind farms. The Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan also seeks to designate another chunk of scrubland as nature preserves.

Now there’s public comment – and public meetings. Officials have scheduled a series of presentations in the counties affected by the Plan. This week, they're in Kern and Inyo Counties.

In November, they come to Lancaster, Blythe, Ontario, and Palm Desert before a final meeting in Sacramento.

Critics say the meeting schedule doesn't give people who aren’t energy lobbyists or environmental advocates an opportunity to participate. Comments are due by January 9. But officials say they’re doing everything they can to gather as many comments as possible.

Check out the map below; the plan covers the area in blue.