For Immediate Release: April 19, 2010
Media Contact: Percy Della - 916-654-4989


Independent scientists meet April 22 to help prepare California's Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan

When: Public meeting at 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m.

When: Thursday, April 22, 2010

Where: : Lake Arrowhead Room, Doubletree Hotel Ontario Airport,
222 North Vineyard Avenue, Ontario, California

Background: Independent scientists, chosen for their expertise in desert ecology, conservation biology, and endangered species will advise the Renewable Energy Action Team (REAT) in preparing California's Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP). When completed, the plan will identify appropriate locations for renewable energy power plants in the Mojave and Colorado Desert regions as well as areas for ecosystem-scale wildlife and habitat conservation. The California Energy Commission, California Department of Fish and Game, federal Bureau of Land Management, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service comprise the REAT. Governor Schwarzenegger's Executive Order S-14-08 created REAT to expedite renewable energy facilities that contribute to a 33-percent-by-2020 Renewables Portfolio Standard, while protecting desert ecosystems.

At the public meeting, REAT agency representatives, DRECP stakeholders, and other scientists will present information about the plan to help orient the science advisers. Their presentations will help advisers understand the outstanding questions and concerns they will be asked to address in an Independent Science Report to the DRECP. The public is also invited to suggest scientific questions for the advisers. The report will offer recommendations for the plan, such as how to sustain sensitive desert ecosystems and species while developing large-scale renewable energy facilities.

The independent science advisers to the DRECP are:

  • Wayne Spencer (Lead Scientist and Science Facilitator), Conservation Biology Institute
  • Scott Abella, School of Environmental and Public Affairs, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Cameron Barrows, Desert Studies Institute of Center for Conservation Biology, UC Riverside
  • Kristin Berry, U.S. Geological Survey
  • Todd Esque, U.S. Geological Survey
  • Kimball Garrett, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
  • Chrissy Howell , PRBO Conservation Science
  • Robin Kobaly, The SummerTree Institute
  • Reed Noss, University of Central Florida
  • Richard Redak, Department of Entomology, UC Riverside
  • Robert Webb, U.S. Geological Survey
  • Ted Weller, United States Forest Service, Redwood Science Lab

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