XVI. MANDATORY FINDINGS OF SIGNIFICANCE
As discussed in the previous sections, the proposed project has a limited potential to degrade the quality of the environment. However, the project would not cause any of the other effects listed in a) above. Although the project may cause potentially significant impacts on water quality and biological resources, mitigation measures proposed by PG&E would reduce the potential impacts to less than significant levels. These measures include establishing buffer zones between the work area and Heney and Stevens Creeks, removal of spoils to approved dumping locations, implementation of an erosion control plan, conducting a survey of the construction area for raptors and their nests prior to the spring breeding season and within 30 days prior to construction, and implementing measures to minimize impacts to any nest sites that are found. No other resources evaluated in this Initial Study were found to have potentially significant impacts.
The proposed project facilities would be consistent with long-term regional and area goals for establishing reliable power to support planned regional growth. PG&E, in coordination with the CPUC, also has established programs and incentives for conservation of energy resources. As discussed under c) below, the availability of electrical supply is considered growth-accommodating. Long-term environmental goals would not be adversely impacted by the project. Therefore, the project would not achieve short-term environmental goals to the disadvantage of long-term environmental goals.
In addition to the project proposed by PG&E and addressed in this document, two projects are reasonably foreseeable and may impact the environment cumulatively with the PG&E project. They are (1) the proposed development of a residential subdivision northwest of the Monta Vista substation and (2) the Los Altos Hills Distribution substation.
The residential subdivision is to be developed on approximately 53 acres of a 212-acre site northwest of the Monta Vista substation that is owned by the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose. This project has received zoning and use permits and construction is scheduled to begin on April 15, 1999 (PG&E, 1998a). Construction schedules of the subdivision project and the proposed project may overlap, potentially resulting in cumulative noise, traffic, and air quality impacts from construction activities at the adjacent sites. However, the nearest noise receptors of the two sites are different, thus mitigating the cumulative impacts of noise. In addition, mitigation measures have been incorporated into the permits for the subdivision project. These, combined with the mitigation measures included by PG&E for their proposed project would keep cumulative noise impacts to less than significant levels. Cumulative transportation impacts are not likely to occur because different routes would be used to access the two sites. Cumulative air quality impacts could result from fugitive dust and vehicle and equipment emissions from construction activities. However, implementation of mitigation measures proposed by PG&E and those incorporated in the subdivision project would reduce cumulative air quality impacts to less than significant levels.
The Los Altos Hills Distribution substation is a project under consideration by PG&E to increase electric distribution capacity and reliability in the Los Altos Hills Distribution Planning Area several miles north of the Monta Vista substation. The currently preferred project would install two 115/12kV transformer banks on an area measuring approximately 200 feet by 200 feet (approximately 40,000 square feet, less than one acre) on the grounds of the Monta Vista substation. The impact of the Los Altos Hills Distribution project combined with the proposed project could result in cumulative visual impacts, as the additional equipment would be difficult to completely screen with trees and other vegetation. However, the Los Altos Hills project is still in the planning stages and PG&E had not decided on a final configuration. Therefore, it would be speculative to assess the cumulative impact of this project with the proposed project at this time.
The proposed project is intended to respond to projected growth in electrical demand in the Cities of Mountain View and Cupertino. No new public or private projects are anticipated to be directly initiated as a result of construction of the new overhead and underground power line and the proposed reconductoring of the existing line.
Measures to minimize any potential impacts have been incorporated into the project. Therefore, the cumulative effects of the proposed facilities on the environmental resources discussed in this document would be considered to have a less than significant impact.
As discussed in the previous sections, the project would not result in substantial adverse effects on human beings, either directly or indirectly.
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