Title: COURT HEARING
Come Rally Against SDG&E’s Invitation-Only Groundbreaking for Sunrise Powerlink
1. Take I-8 East to the Boulevard exit (the next one after Crestwood and the Golden Acorn
Reason for rally – SDG&E’s groundbreaking ceremony for the Sunrise Powerlink is wildly
Governor-elect Jerry Brown may have the opportunity to dramatically change the makeup of the PUC commission, the regulatory agency that oversees privately owned utilities such as SDG&E. The PUC approved the Sunrise Powerlink in December 2008. Read this blog post for more about how this may impact energy policy in California.
This letter eloquently states our case for continuing the fight against the powerlink.
Editor of the Union Tribune
While the UT article on October 15, “Alpine tries to avoid life in the fast lane”, accurately describes the resentment that many in our community feel at the changes being forced upon us by SDG&E, it is unfortunate that the UT article misrepresents the Sunrise Powerlink construction as a fete accompli. Although SDG&E has obtained some of the approvals needed, construction is still not assured. They have not yet received a notice to proceed from the CPUC, and they still need to obtain permits from the Corps of Engineers, US Fish & Wildlife, and CA Fish & Game. [It seems ironic that agencies whose mission is to protect waterways and critical habitat would be asked to issue permits to allow the destruction of the pristine backcountry of San Diego County and critical habitat for threatened and endangered species, but that’s another story.]
Thank you to all our wonderful donors and supporters for exceeded our goal of raising $20,000 by August 16! We raised a total of $31,073! This goes a long way towards our legal fund in fighting against the Sunrise Powerlink in court. We will continue to keep you updated on our activities and any future events related to the Sunrise Powerlink.
We have one week remaining to raise meet our challenge of raising $20,000, which will be matched by an anonymous donor. Donations postmarked by August 16, and any donations received online by August 16 will count towards our total. We have raised a total of $17,668 as of August 7th! Thanks to everyone who has donated so far. Please don’t delay if you are planning to donate in the near future. Your contribution will be DOUBLED if it is received by August 16!! Check out the Support POC page for information on how to donate by check or credit card.
From POC President Denis Trafecanty:
At 7am this Saturday I’ll be starting the San Diego 100-mile run with about 150 other runners in the Laguna Mountains. We will go around Big Laguna Lake then north up the Pacific Crest Trail, across Sunrise Highway and down Noble Canyon to Pine Valley. We then head back up Noble Canyon to Pioneer Mail, Stonewall Mine, Stonewall Peak, over to Cuyamaca Peak and then here and there through the night. I’ll end up at the finish line in the Laguna’s hopefully by 11am on Sunday.
The special part about this run is that we have anonymous donors who will contribute $200 for each mile that I run (up to $20,000) to The Protect Our Communities Foundation (POC). The only hitch is that the donors want POC to find matching donations. If we only get $12,000 in other donations, then the major donor will give us a $12,000 match. So, for those who can afford to make a donation before August 15th, we will get a match!
We need all the help we can get to stop the Goliath (SDGE/Sempra) from building a transmission line that is clearly not needed and will cause irreparable damage to our beloved backcountry, including our public and private lands, and will most likely contribute to an uncontrollable fire catastrophe like in 2003 and 2007.
If you are inclined please make a donation (Support POC) And wish me a safe journey!
Reminder: The official public comment period for the US Forest Service decision on the Sunrise Powerlink is June 29. Please send letters to:
Mail: William Metz, Forest Supervisor, 10845 Rancho Bernardo Road, Suite 200, San Diego, CA 92127, ATTN: Sunrise Powerlink Comments
Fax: (858) 673-6192
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, with a subject line of “Sunrise Powerlink Comments”
Phone: (858) 673-6180
•Thank the Forest Service for delaying the project but ask that they follow the law and prepare a full “Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement” and to distribute this for public review.
•Ask for a public hearing during this 45-day comment period.
•Oppose the powerlink because it’s not needed and would irreparably harm nature, communities, and property.
•Express your concern that the powerlink would unnecessarily undermine existing forest plan goals to limit fire risk, protect scenic natural views, and to protect riparian and roadless areas.
•Remind the Forest Service of its independent duty to protect the Cleveland National Forest and to consider smart, local, renewable energy alternatives to the powerlink. The Forest Service is not bound to the bad decisions and ignorance of other agencies.
•Express that the Forest Service’s internal “supplemental information report” cannot replace a legitimate Supplement Environmental Impact Statement. Point out that the supplemental information report hasn’t even been made public and ask that this be made available for public review with another public comment period.
A lawsuit was filed today to stop construction of SDG&E’s Sunrise Powerlink transmission line through southern Imperial and San Diego Counties. The lawsuit was filed in the Federal Eastern District Court in Sacramento.
The lawsuit challenges the decision of the US Bureau of Land Management to approve the power line in January of 2009. Three local community groups, POC, Backcountry Against Dumps, and the East County Community Action Coalition filed the lawsuit after the BLM failed to address issues raised in their administrative appeal.
Thanks to all of our supporters who helped make this possible. The fight has just begun and we will continue to work to stop this project from ever seeing the light of day.
An SDG&E sponsored Community Council meeting was held in Alpine last night to address mitigation issues for the Sunrise Powerlink construction in the Alpine area. The standing room only crowd had many tough questions for SDG&E public relations personnel and engineers, including the big question of where they will get 70 million gallons of water necessary for construction of the line. SDG&E was unable to answer the question. The environmental expert on staff at SDG&E explained to the crowd that they were “cutting corners” on the project, a misguided effort at a joke about making the line shorter. In general many people in the crowd knew more about the project than the staff on hand to answer questions.
The next step for many of us is to now write to the CPUC to make sure they are aware of ALL the issues that need to be mitigated on this project. SDG&E stated many times last night that were “still studying the problem” regardless of what the question was about. CPUC will not issue a Notice to Proceed until all mitigations have been addressed. If you feel that SDG&E needs to look at something further, please write to the CPUC directly. You should also send a copy of any correspondence to Supervisor Diane Jacob. Their addresses are listed below:
Supervisor Diane Jacob