Wilderness Society: Finalization of Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan Balances Clean Energy Development and Land Conservation in the California Desert

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Landmark plan addresses the challenges of climate change while protecting desert resources.

This plan is a thoughtful and balanced blueprint for the future of the California desert. It provides a model for the entire nation by addressing the urgent need for clean energy while protecting important lands for wildlife and plants. -- Dan Smuts

The Wilderness Society welcomes the finalization of the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP). This landmark collaborative effort by stakeholders and state and federal agencies, marks a major step forward in meeting California’s ambitious renewable energy goals and addressing climate change, while also protecting critical wildlife habitat, historic and natural resources on our shared public lands.

The DRECP will help streamline the permitting process and provide certainty for clean energy development, while guiding utility-scale projects to the most appropriate locations and conserving valuable and vulnerable wild places in the California desert.

The following statement is from Dan Smuts, Senior Regional Director, Pacific Region for The Wilderness Society:

“This plan is a thoughtful and balanced blueprint for the future of the California desert. It provides a model for the entire nation by addressing the urgent need for clean energy while protecting important lands for wildlife and plants.”

The California desert offers some of the best renewable energy resources in the world, but it is also home to historic trails, ancient Native American petroglyphs, and remarkable wildlife like bighorn sheep and desert tortoise. It’s a region of spectacular vistas and exceptional recreational opportunities. The finalization of phase one of the DRECP demonstrates to the entire nation that through intelligent planning, we can provide renewable energy solutions and protect our cherished wild lands.”

Additional Resources:
Media Resources—including images and video for publication
Blog: Finally! California desert plan strikes right balance for conservation and clean energy
Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan
Desert Treasures: Help us protect these 12 California gems
A photographic tour through California’s Desert Treasures

Contacts:
Dan Smuts, Senior Director, Pacific Region, (415) 254-7271, dan_smuts(at)tws(dot)org
Chase Huntley, Director of Energy & Climate Program, (202) 429-7431 chuntley(at)tws(dot)org
Phil Hanceford, Assistant Director, Agency Policy & Planning, (303) 225-4636 phil_hanceford(at)tws(dot)org
Jennifer Dickson, Senior Communications Manager, Southwest Region, (202) 316-2555 jennifer_dickson(at)tws(dot)org

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Jennifer Dickson

Dan Smuts
The Wilderness Society
(415) 254-7271
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