STATE OF CALIFORNIA
PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION

Southern California Edison's
West of Devers Upgrade Project

(Application A.13-10-020, filed October 25, 2013)


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Welcome to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) website for the environmental review of the proposed Southern California Edison (SCE) West of Devers Upgrade Project (Proposed Project). The project is proposed to be located in incorporated and unincorporated portions of Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, California; a map is provided here. SCE submitted a Certificate for Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) application for the Project to the CPUC on October 25, 2013 (Application A.13-10-020). The Proposed Project is subject to review under both the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

The CPUC is the CEQA lead agency and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is the NEPA lead agency. This site provides access to public documents and information relevant to the CEQA review processes. A link to the BLM project website can be accessed here.

Description of Proposed Project

Previously Proposed West of Devers Upgrades. On April 11, 2005, SCE submitted an application for a CPCN for a 500 kV interstate transmission line project, the Devers-Palo Verde No. 2 (DPV2). The project included three major components:

  • A 500 kV line from the Palo Verde area in Arizona to a new substation near Blythe, California;

  • A 500 kV line from the Blythe area substation to the Devers Substation; and

  • Upgrades to SCE's lower voltage transmission system west of the Devers Substation.

The CPUC approved the DPV2 Project in January 2007 in Decision D.07-01-040. The approved Project included the SCE proposal except for the West of Devers Upgrades, which were replaced by the Devers to Valley 500 kV #2 line. On May 14, 2008, SCE filed a Petition for Modification (PFM) of the CPCN approved per Decision D.07-01-040. In the PFM, SCE requested that the CPUC authorize SCE to construct DPV2 facilities in only the California portion of DPV2 and the Midpoint Substation (later re-named as the Colorado River Substation) near Blythe, California. The CPUC approved SCE's PFM on November 20, 2009 in Decision D.09-11-007. The BLM issued its Record of Decision approving the project on July 19, 2011.

The West of Devers upgrade components as proposed by SCE in 2005 could not be approved by the CPUC and BLM because by the time of agency decisions (January 2007), the Morongo Band of Mission Indians had not reached an agreement with SCE on terms of the right-of-way (ROW) renewal for the nearly 6 miles of the corridor that crosses tribal land. Therefore, the Devers Substation to Valley Substation alternative route was approved instead of the WOD Project route, and that segment has now been constructed. In addition, the 500 kV segment from the new Colorado River Substation (southwest of Blythe) to the Devers Substation has been constructed.

New West of Devers Upgrade Project. In 2013, SCE and the Morongo Band reached an agreement on the terms for ROW renewal for the corridor on Morongo tribal land. After reaching this agreement, SCE filed this CPCN application for the West of Devers Upgrade Project with the CPUC and filed a Plan of Development with the BLM. The CPUC and BLM will prepare a joint environmental impact report (EIR) and Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to comply with both CEQA and NEPA.

According to SCE the Proposed Project would be needed to facilitate the full deliverability of new electric generation resources being developed in eastern Riverside County. As renewable energy generating facilities come on-line in eastern Riverside County, the West of Devers Upgrade Project would allow the transfer of this electricity into the Los Angeles area. The Proposed Project would facilitate progress towards meeting California's Renewable Portfolio Standard goals requiring utilities to produce 33% of their electricity sales from renewable energy sources by 2020.

The West of Devers Upgrade Project as proposed by SCE includes the following major components:

  • Removal and upgrade of existing 220 kV transmission lines. Upgrades would occur on 30 miles of the Devers-El Casco line, 14 miles of the El Casco-San Bernardino line, 43 miles of the Devers-San Bernardino line, 45 miles of the Devers-Vista No. 1 and No. 2 lines, 3.5 miles of the Etiwanda-San Bernardino line, and 3.5 miles of the San Bernardino-Vista line.

  • Upgrade substation equipment at Devers, El Casco, Etiwanda, San Bernardino, and Vista Substations to accommodate increased power transfer on 220 kV lines.

  • Upgrade Timoteo and Tennessee 66/12 kV substations to accommodate 66 kV subtransmission line relocations.

  • Removal and relocation of 2 miles of two existing 66 kV subtransmission lines.

  • Removal and relocation of 4 miles of existing 12 kV distribution lines.

  • Installation of telecommunication lines and equipment for the protection, monitoring, and control of transmission lines and substation equipment.

The Proposed Project would be located within the existing West of Devers right-of way corridor in incorporated and unincorporated areas of Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. The ROW passes through the reservation trust land of the Morongo Band of Mission Indians and the cities of Banning, Beaumont, Calimesa, Colton, Grand Terrace, Loma Linda, Palm Springs, Rancho Cucamonga, Redlands, San Bernardino, and Yucaipa (see project map). SCE states that the Proposed Project would be operational by 2020.

Proponent's Environmental Assessment (PEA)

SCE filed an application and PEA for the WOD Project on October 25, 2013.

Since the SCE filing, the CPUC has conducted a 30-day completeness/deficiency review. Based on the review of the PEA, the CPUC sent a deficiency letter to SCE on November 25, 2013 indicating that the PEA is incomplete. SCE is working with the CPUC to satisfy all the deficiencies.

Environmental Review

Notice of Preparation (NOP) and Notice of Intent (NOI). Issuance of a CEQA Notice of Preparation (NOP) and NEPA Notice of Intent (NOI) is the first step in the EIR/EIS process. These documents provide a description of the proposed Project and potential alternatives, as well as a schedule of the CPUC and BLM's proposed scoping process that will include public scoping meetings and agency consultations. The NOP was published on May 7, 2014. The NOI was published on July 1, 2014.

Scoping Meetings. In order for the public and regulatory agencies to have an opportunity to ask questions on the scope of the EIR/EIS, the CPUC held 4 scoping meetings in the project area on May 19, 20, and 21, 2014, and the BLM held one scoping meeting on July 16, 2014. Information presented at the meetings, and meeting transcripts, are available here.

Public Scoping Report. The CPUC and BLM have prepared Public Scoping Reports that document the scoping activities and oral comments from the scoping meetings, as well as the written documents submitted in response to the NOP and NOI. These reports will serve as information sources to the CPUC and BLM in their determination of the range of issues and alternatives to be addressed in the Draft EIR/EIS.

Data Requests. The CPUC and BLM have identified information items needed for the EIR/EIS analysis and have submitted the following data requests. Responses to these data requests will be posted here, as they are received. Additional data requests will be included, as they are needed throughout the environmental review process.

Data Request #1 submitted to SCE on February 21, 2014 (SCE Data Responses)
Data Request #2 submitted to SCE on March 18, 2014 (SCE Data Responses)
Data Request #3 submitted to SCE on March 19, 2014 (SCE Data Responses)
Data Request #4 submitted to SCE on April 2, 2014 (SCE Data Responses)
Data Request #5 submitted to SCE on April 24, 2014 (SCE Data Responses)
Data Request #6 submitted to SCE on August 4, 1914 (SCE Data Responses)

Data Request #1 submitted to the Morongo Band of Mission Indians on May 6, 2014 (Morongo Band Data Responses)

Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS)

Draft EIR/EIS. When published, the Draft EIR/EIS will be available here.

Final EIR/EIS. The Final Environmental Impact Report/Statement (Final EIR/EIS) outlining the Proposed Project, project alternatives, the Environmentally Superior Alternative, environmental impacts, and mitigation measures will be available here when published.

Public Informational Meetings on Draft EIR/EIS. After release of the Draft EIR/EIS, the CPUC and BLM will conduct public meetings on the West of Devers Upgrade Project. Information on the meeting agenda, public meeting presentation, public comment form, and date and time of the meeting will be posted here, when available.

For Additional Information

The CPUC, through its Environmental Review Team, is conducting an environmental review of the project. To request additional information or to be added to the mailing list, please contact us by email or phone, as follows:

Project e-mail: westofdevers@aspeneg.com
Project voicemail: (888) 456-0254

The CPUC's Project Manager is:
Billie Blanchard, CPUC Project Manager
California Public Utilities Commission
c/o Aspen Environmental Group
235 Montgomery Street, Suite 935
San Francisco, CA 94104-3002
Billie.Blanchard@cpuc.ca.gov
   

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