California Energy Commission Letterhead

Notice of BLM and Energy Commission
Staff Workshop for the
SES Solar Two Project (08-AFC-5)
(BLM Right-of-Way Application CACA-47740)

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the California Energy Commission (Energy Commission) will conduct a staff workshop for the Stirling Energy Systems Solar Two (SES Solar Two) Project on February 10, 2009. The purpose of the workshop is to discuss the potential alternatives and cumulative impacts to be addressed in the joint environmental documents for the SES Solar Two Project. All interested agencies and members of the public are invited to participate. The workshop will be held:

Tuesday, February 10, 2009
10:00 A.M.
California Energy Commission
Hearing Room B
1516 Ninth Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
(Wheelchair Accessible)


New Information Added January 29, 2009

To facilitate participation of local residents, the BLM will be providing a conference room at their El Centro District Office connected via speaker-phone to the workshop. If you wish to listen from the BLM conference room, please show up at the address below at least 15 minutes prior to the start of the workshop:

Bureau of Land Management, El Centro Field Office
1661 South 4th Street
El Centro, CA 92243

To Participate Remotely:

Instructions to Connect via Telephone Only (No Computer Access)

  1. Call: 1-866-469-3239
  2. When prompted enter this meeting number: 925 070 536
  3. When it asks for Attendee ID press: #

Instructions to Connect via Computer Logon with a Direct Phone Number

  1. Go to and enter the unique meeting number: 925 070 536
  2. When prompted, enter your information and the following meeting password: SITING123!
  3. After you login, a prompt will appear on-screen for you to provide your phone number. In the Number box, type your area code and phone number and click OK to receive a call back on your phone for the audio of the meeting. International callers can use the "Country/Region" button to help make their connection.

Computer Logon for Callers with an Extension Phone Number, etc.:

  1. Please go to and enter the unique meeting number 925 070 536
  2. When prompted, enter your information and the following meeting password SITING123!
  3. After you login, a prompt will ask for your phone number. CLICK CANCEL.
  4. Instead call 1-866-469-3239 (toll-free in the U.S. and Canada). When prompted, enter the meeting number above and your unique Attendee ID number which is listed in the top left area of your screen after you login. International callers can dial in using the "Show all global call-in numbers" link (also in the top left area).

If you have difficulty joining the meeting, please call the WebEx Technical Support number at 1-866-229-3239. Please be aware that the meeting's WebEx audio and on-screen activity may be recorded.

Purpose of the Workshop

The BLM and Energy Commission are currently reviewing Stirling Energy Systems Solar Two, LLC's (SES Solar Two, LLC's) Application for Certification for the proposed development of the SES Solar Two Project. To facilitate its review of the joint Application for Certification and Environmental Impact Statement process, the BLM and Energy Commission staff need to identify appropriate alternatives for the proposed project and identify other current or proposed projects in the area for the cumulative impacts analysis.

Project Description

The proposed project would utilize SunCatcher technology, consisting of approximately 30,000 25-kilowatt solar power dishes with a generating capacity of approximately 750 megawatts (MW) to be built in two phases. The first phase would consist up to 12,000 SunCatchers configured in 200 1.5 MW solar groups of 60 SunCatchers per group and have a net nominal generating capacity of 300 MW. The second phase would consist of approximately 18,000 SunCatchers configured in 500 1.5 MW groups with a net generating capacity of 450 MW. Each SunCatcher system consists of an approximate 38-foot high by 40-foot wide solar concentrator dish that supports an array of curved glass mirror facets designed to automatically track the sun and focus solar energy onto a Power Conversion Unit which generates electricity. Related structures would include a main services complex, assembly buildings, a 230-kilovolt (kV) electrical substation, access roads, water supply line, and a 10-mile double circuit 230-kV transmission line from the project site to San Diego Gas and Electric's existing Imperial Valley electrical substation interconnecting the project to the existing 500-kV transmission system. Phase II is dependent on construction of the proposed Sunrise Powerlink 500-kV transmission line that would also interconnect with the Imperial Valley electrical substation.


On October 8, 2008, the Energy Commission began review of the project. During the review period, Energy Commission staff will determine whether the proposed project complies with applicable laws related to public health and safety, environmental impacts, and engineering requirements. As the lead agency under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the Energy Commission is responsible for reviewing and ultimately approving or denying all applications to construct and operate thermal electric power plants, 50 MW and greater, in California. The Energy Commission facility certification process carefully examines public health and safety, environmental impacts and engineering aspects of proposed power plants and all related facilities such as electric transmission lines and natural gas and water pipelines.

Under federal law, the BLM is responsible for processing applications for rights-of-way to authorize the proposed project and associated transmission lines and other facilities to be constructed and operated on land it manages. In processing applications, the BLM must comply with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), which requires that federal agencies consider the environmental impacts associated with the projects they approve.

Pursuant to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), the BLM and the Energy Commission staff intend to conduct a joint environmental review of the SES Solar Two Project in a NEPA/ CEQA process. It is in the interest of the BLM and the Energy Commission to share in the preparation of a joint environmental analysis of the proposed project to avoid duplication of staff efforts, to share staff expertise and information, to promote intergovernmental coordination at the local, state, and federal levels, and to facilitate public review by providing a joint document and a more efficient environmental review process.

Public Participation

The Energy Commission's Public Adviser's Office provides the public with assistance in participating in Commission activities. If you want information on how to participate in this proceeding, please contact the Associate Public Adviser, Loreen McMahon, at: (916) 654-4489, toll free at (800) 822-6228, by FAX at (916) 654-4493, or by e-mail at If you have a disability and require assistance to participate, please contact Lourdes Quiroz, the Energy Commission Equal Employment Opportunity Officer, at or at (916) 654-5146 at least five days in advance or the workshop. For those persons with limited English knowledge, request interpreter services by contacting Christopher Meyer, the Energy Commission Project Manager (contact information provided below).


General information about the proposed generating facility and related documents are available on the Energy Commission's website at: or the BLM's website at: Please direct all news media inquiries to the Energy Commission's media office at (916) 654-4989 or e-mail at For technical questions on the subject matter, please contact Christopher Meyer, the Energy Commission Project Manager, at (916) 653-1639 or by e-mail at: or Jim Stobaugh, the BLM Project Manager, at (775) 861-6478 or by e-mail at: If you are unable to attend the workshop, written comments may be sent to the Energy Commission Project Manager electronically or to the Energy Commission's street address shown on the letterhead of this notice.

BLM and Energy Commission Staff Workshop SES Solar Two Project (08-AFC-5) Tuesday, February 10, 2009 10:00 A.M. California Energy Commission Hearing Room B 1516 Ninth Street Sacramento, CA 95814 (Wheelchair Accessible)

Date posted: January 27, 2009.

TERRENCE O'BRIEN, Deputy Director
Siting, Transmission, and Environmental Protection Division

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