What's New at the Institute
Key Approval of Sonoran Solar Project
December 20, 2011 Key approval of the Sonoran Solar application in Arizona could provide enough clean power nearly 90,000 homes in the Phoenix region. Read the full article here
Collaborating to Build Arizona's Clean Energy Future
March 22, 2011 Sonoran Institute co-sponsored a conference, Collaborating to Build Arizona's Clean Energy Future, examining how the state fits into a broader clean energy picture, with a focus on utility-scale generation and inter-state transmission. For presentations and other resources from the conference, click here.
Join our select group of Hummingbird Circle members who have stepped up their giving to support the vital work of the Sonoran Institute.
NextEra’s Sonoran Solar project is a proposed 300MW solar photovoltaic energy plant that would be built on BLM land north of the Sonoran Desert National Monument. The Sonoran Institute is working with the developer and other groups to mitigate the project’s environmental impact. For more information:
Abengoa Solana is a 250MW concentrated solar thermal power plant that is under construction on private (formerly agricultural) land west of Gila Bend, Arizona. Because of its location on already disturbed lands, proximity to existing transmission, and extensive community outreach during the planning process, the Sonoran Institute was an early supporter of the project. For more information about Solana, go to:
The Sonoran Institute supports federal, state, and local policies that facilitate solar development in areas with the best solar resources and the fewest environmental impacts. Ideally, it is concentrated in already disturbed areas near existing transmission lines and other infrastructure.
Sonoran Institute commissioned K. R. Saline and Associates, PLC, to conduct interviews of stakeholders in the Arizona power plant and transmission line siting process. The purpose of the survey was to obtain stakeholders’ comments on the current siting process—where it functions well, where it could function better, and what particular improvements could be made, specifically through reform of the siting statutes. Read the report .
BLM Solar PEIS
The Bureau of Land Management's Restoration Design Energy Project (RDEP), funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, supports the Secretary of Interior's goals to build America's new energy future and to protect and restore treasured landscapes. Read more.
Arizona Solar Working Group
Applying its land-use expertise, the Sonoran Institute is working with a range of stakeholders as the Arizona Solar Working Group to identify where large-scale solar plants can be located with minimal impacts on the environment. The group will lend support to those projects that will be built on suitable lands. We are looking at siting opportunities on US Bureau of Land Management lands, state trust lands, and private lands.
- Arizona Solar Working Group Members
- AZSWG Comments on the Draft EIS for the Restoration Design Energy Project
- AZSWG Comments on Restoration Design Energy Project Related to Proximity to Transmission
The Sonoran Institute is a member of Western Clean Energy Advocates (WCEA), a diverse coalition working to transform the way energy is produced, used and distributed across the West. WCEA has released a Clean Energy Vision for the West that shows how clean energy can revitalize the economies of every western state. Click here for more information.
The Sonoran Institute has developed a series of fact sheets that explores how Arizona can best capitalize on its solar potential. Please click on the fact sheet you are interested in to view and/or download. Enjoy.