SDG&E

POWERLINK OPPOSITION LEADER TO SPEAK JUNE 16 IN EL CAJON

June 15, 2011 (El Cajon) – Laura Cyphert, a Cedar Fire survivor who co-founded the East County Community Action Coalition along with her husband, Milt, will provide an update on the legal battle against Sunrise Powerlink on Thursday, June 16 from 7-8:45 p.m.

 


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OOPS! THEY DID IT AGAIN: SDG&E CHOPPER DROPS A SECOND TOWER

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photos by Dennis Richardson
June 10, 2011 (San Diego)—Just four days after its sky crane dropped a Sunrise Powerlink tower 200 feet, a second transmission line tower has toppled in the Imperial Valley.
 

Following last Monday’s accident, SDG&E promised in a press release that the company was “taking immediate steps…to investigate what occurred today in order to ensure that this does not happen again.”

 

But it did happen again. Today at 8 a.m.,  the Sun Bird Erickson Air Crane helicopter was placing the fifth of five towers near Plaster City when three of the helicopter’s four hooks released.  Dangling by just one hook, the 15,000 pound tower was lowered to the ground and released, where it tipped over.  Fourtunately, no one was injured in either incident.  But residents of East County, where construction of Powerlink is also underway, are voicing concerns over safety of workers and the public.


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SDG&E HELICOPTER DROPS SECTION OF POWERLINK TOWER 200 FEET

 

June 7, 2011 (San Diego) -- San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) has announced that its air crane helicopter was involved in an accident today during construction activities for Sunrise Powerlink in the Imperial Valley.  The Powerlink high-voltage transmission line is also under construction through several communities in East County.  

 

“This morning a section of a transmission tower carried by the helicopter fell approximately 200- feet to the ground outside SDG&E’s Plaster City Construction Yard near the shoulder of the Evan Hewes Highway,” a media statement released by the company indicated.  View a photo of the crash.


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SDG&E REMOVES PILOT FOR FLYING TOO CLOSE TO EAGLE NESTS

 

CPUC finds SDG&E in violation of two mitigation requirements, following ECM video documentation

 By Miriam Raftery


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SDG&E SIGNS SOLAR CONTRACT WITH TENASKA

 

New solar factory in San Diego to create 450 local jobs and additional 1,000 indirect jobs

March 23, 2011 (San Diego) San Diego Gas & Electric has announced a 25-year contract for up to 150 megawatts of solar energy to be generated at the Imperial Solar Energy Center West’s proposed 1,057-acre solar energy facility near El Centro. 

In addition, Soitec announced its intention to build a new solar panel manufacturing factory in the San Diego region, creating 450 local jobs and more than 1,000 additional indirect jobs.


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READER’S EDITORIAL: WHY IS OUR DRINKING WATER BEING SIPHONED OFF BY SDG&E FOR SUNRISE POWERLINK CONSTRUCTION?

 

An open letter to San Diego's Mayor and City Council

 

By John Pilch
President, San Carlos Area Council

 

March 22, 2011 (San Diego) --I'm intrigued by what's happening in the San Carlos Community with respect to water usage. While we're being advised of the continuing Stage 2 Drought Alert, the City of San Diego is selling water from two  hydrants on Lake Murray Blvd. West Frontage Road to the contractor who is constructing the Southwest Powerlink.


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READER’S EDITORIAL: THE BUZZ OVER POWERLINK--WHY WE SHOULD SUPPORT WORKERS ON THE LINE

 

By Michelle Mann, Boulevard


“In a time of economic fallout it is nice that there are still jobs for good hard working Americans. That is what these guys are that are out building the power line.”

 

March 19, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) -- It is amazing to hear all the buzz about this new power line going in. It is astonishing how many people are trying to sabotage this project and oppose it. I would like to see all those people who are making such a stink about this project turn their power off. The only reason why these guys are out here building the power line is to provide power to those that are complaining.


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EAST COUNTY RESIDENTS PROTEST ON STEPS OF SDG&E UPON NEWS THAT JUDGE CANCELS POWERLINK HEARING

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photos by Ron Logan, Miriam Raftery, and Merton Gaudette

 

March 10, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Candy Jenkins was looking forward to seeing environmental evidence presented to a federal judge in San Diego on Monday. “I live on El Capitan Mountain,” said the Lakeside resident, who  alleges that SDG&E is building Sunrise Powerlink towers only 2,000 feet from an eagles’ nest. She has photos, and says the eagles are tagged and the locations documented by the County. “Towers weren’t supposed to be within 4,000 feet,” she said. “We’re bringing this out today in court.”

 

Told by this reporter that the hearing had been cancelled because Judge Michael Anello announced that he will be ruling on the written record only, Jenkins expressed shock. “It’s heartbreaking,” she said. “Whatever happened to democracy in America?”


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JUDGE CANCELS POWERLINK HEARING; RALLY TO PROCEED OUTSIDE SDG&E TODAY AT 12:30

 

March 7, 2011 (San Diego) – A federal judge has cancelled a public hearing challenging Sunrise Powerlink. The trial was slated to begin today in downtown San Diego, but instead the judge has notified plaintiffs that he will be ruling based on the record.  The decision comes as a disappointment to Powerlink opponents, who say they looked forward to having their day in court.

Organizers of a “stop Powerlink” march to the courthouse have announced they will still hold a rally outside SDG&E headquarters today at 12:30 at 101 Ash Street, where speakers will include Supervisor Dianne Jacob, Michael Shamas, executive director of the Utility Consumers Action Network (UCAN), and. Dave Elliot, tribal member of the Manzanita Band of Kumeyaay.


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POWERLINK TRIAL STARTS IN SAN DIEGO: OPPONENTS PLAN MARCH FROM SDG&E HEADQUARTERS TO COURTHOUSE MARCH 7

 

 

March 3, 2011 (San Diego) – “Not a done deal. We are in court,” reads a flyer published by opponents of the Sunrise Powerlink project urging the public to join a march to the federal courthouse downtown, where the first federal lawsuit against the high-voltage line will be heard on March 7th.

 


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A PIECE OF RESISTANCE: RATEPAYERS PROTEST POWERLINK IN ALPINE

 

$1.8 billion, the cost of the Powerlink, could fund 90,000 individual 5kW systems which would generate nearly a half million kW (450,000 kW) per hour, opponents say.

 

Story and photos by Ron Logan

March 1, 2011 (Alpine) – Tuesday morning, Sempra Energy and SDG&E encountered more pushback to their Sunrise Powerlink construction in downtown Alpine.

 

The Powerlink construction, which will take about two years to construct and is scheduled for completion in 2012, has drawn criticism at every step of the process, including hundreds of Alpine residents who have turned out at past hearings to voice overwhelming opposition to the project.


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ALPINE MERCHANTS & RESIDENTS FEEL PAIN OF POWERLINK CONSTRUCTION IMPACTS

 

Historic adobe building may be torn down to replace parking lost to Powerlink

 


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CA SUPREME COURT REJECTS UCAN APPEAL, SIDES WITH SDG&E ON POWERLINK

 

 

February 24, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – The California Supreme Court has denied without comment an appeal filed by Utility Consumers Action Network (UCAN), which sought to stop the Sunrise Powerlink project on the basis that it violated the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).


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COMMENTS DEADLINE EXTENDED FOR TULE WIND, ECO SUBSTATION & RELATED PROJECT IN EAST COUNTY


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SECOND LAWSUIT IN MONTH FILED OVER POWERLINK;

 

 

February 11, 2011 (San Diego). – Legal troubles are mounting for San Diego Gas and Electric's proposed "Sunrise Powerlink" transmission line with the filing of a new lawsuit this week by three local organizations against California's State Water Resources Control Board. The lawsuit was filed in California State Superior Court in Sacramento.


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SDG&E AND PATTERN ENERGY SIGN CONTRACT FOR 315 MEGAWATTS FROM NEW WIND ENERGY FACILITY


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SDG&E SCHEDULED POWER OUTAGES FOR EAST COUNTY THIS WEEK

February 1, 2011 - The Alpine Sun has provided this information to pass along to residents about planned electrical outages Feb. 2 and 4 in Alpine and Pine Valley. According to SDG&E, none of these Power Outages are Sunrise Power Link Related.


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SDG&E OFFERS SAFETY ADVICE AFTER FAMILY IS ELECTROCUTED BY DOWNED POWER LINE

 

January 27, 2011 (San Diego)— Earlier this month in San Bernardino County, three members of a family were electrocuted when they came in contact with a downed power line owned by Southern California Edison. According to news reports, the husband was the first one to approach the downed line, which had fallen into the family’s backyard. His wife and son also were killed when they tried to rescue him from the energized line.

 

“This tragedy serves as a reminder that you should never touch a downed power line and always should assume that any power line is ‘live’ and electricity is flowing through it,” said David L. Geier, vice president of electric operations for SDG&E.


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3 LOCAL GROUPS FILE SUIT TO BLOCK SUNRISE POWERLINK ON FEDERAL LANDS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 15, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Three local organizations and an East County land use issues expert have filed a lawsuit against five federal agencies. The suit alleges that the agencies approved SDG&E’s planned Sunrise Powerlink transition line in violation of environmental regulations—in some cases, making decisions based on the original route through the Anza Borrego Desert, instead of the revised southern route through numerous East County communities.

 

The suit makes other contentions, notably that key decision makers ignored fire danger and failed to consider the collective impact on public lands in East County, where several wind farms are planned as well as Powerlink in some wilderness areas.  In addition, plaintiffs claim that some decisions were made before completion of studies on endangered species and that once completed, those studies found the project could threaten endangered Peninsular bighorn sheep, golden eagles, and other species.


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6 BIG DESERT SOLAR PROJECTS GET UNWELCOME HOLIDAY SURPISE: NATIVE AMERICAN GROUP FILES SUIT AGAINST BLM FOR FAILURE TO CONSENT

December 28, 2010 (Blythe, CA)-- La Cuna de Aztlan Sacred Sites Protection Circle, a Native American cultural protection group, filed a lawsuit yesterday in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, challenging the Bureau of Land Management permitting processes regarding six large solar facilities planned for the Mohave, Sonoran and Colorado deserts of Southern California (Case No.10CV2664 WQH WVG), including an Imperial Valley Solar project slated to hook up to SDG&E’s Sunrise Powerlink.


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FEDERAL JUDGE HALTS FIRST LARGE-SCALE SOLAR PROJECT ON PUBLIC LANDS


Judge grants Quechan Indian tribe’s request for temporary injunction on Tessera Solar plant in Imperial Valley;
decision has ramifications for large-scale energy projects in East County and across the nation
 

By Miriam Raftery
 

December 16, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Local and statewide activists battling massive energy projects on public lands are praising a decision issued by U.S. District Court Judge Larry Burns yesterday, while the CEO of Tessera Solar says he is "deeply disappointed" in the ruling.

 

The federal Judge issued a temporary restraining order halting construction on the first massive desert solar project authorized on public lands—a project that if built, would be one of the largest solar power plants in the world.


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SEMPRA ENERGY FOUNDATION DONATES $1 MILLION TO HELP PEOPLE IN NEED DURING HOLIDAY SEASON

 

Dec. 16, 2010 (San Diego) – For the second consecutive year, Sempra Energy Foundation today announced $1 million in charitable donations to non-profit organizations in California and the U.S. Gulf region to help people in need. The contributions also include a grant-incentive program to support the Sempra Energy family of companies’ employee volunteer efforts.

 


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POWER OUTAGE IN EAST COUNTY

December 13, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – An estimated 1,000 to 2,000 customers are in the dark due to a power outage in Santee, El Cajon, Fletcher Hills, Lake Murray and Sycamore Canyon areas, SDG&E reports. Power went down around 5:26 p.m. due to a suspected problem in overhead electrical lines.

 

Estimated time for power to be restored is 7 p.m.


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GREEN GOLD MINE OR LAND GRAB? GOVERNOR, DIGNITARIES AT POWERLINK GROUNDBREAKING IN EAST COUNTY

150 protesters stage rally outside, vow to file new lawsuits

View our video highlights by Billy Ortiz

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

Photos by Dennis Richardson and Miriam Raftery

 

 

 

 

“Some people look out in the deserts and just see empty space. I see a gold mine there for clean energy.” – Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

“This is a big land grab—the taking away of our wilderness areas.” – Marion Bowles, protester

December 10, 2010 (McCain Valley) – Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Robert Kennedy’s son, Joe Kennedy, were among the leaders on hand for a symbolic groundbreaking of Sunrise Powerlink yesterday at McCain Valley in San Diego’s East County. Inside the Rough Acre Ranch (former training ground for the San Diego Chargers), the Governor praised the project as “an example to the rest of the nation.”

 

He then helped affix a commemorative plaque to a massive power tower top, or bridge, wider than the audience seating area. The project will have 436 towers. Afterwards, about 200 invited guests celebrated at a lavish luncheon provided by SDG&E and its parent, Sempra Energy.


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SDG&E OFFERS HEATING SAFETY TIPS

 

December 9, 2010 (San Diego)--With the cold weather and chilly nighttime temperatures, San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) is reminding customers that safety should be a top priority in cold-weather heating.


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GOVERNOR TO SPEAK AT SUNRISE POWERLINK GROUNDBREAKING TODAY; PROTEST PLANNED IN MCCAIN VALLEY

 

December 9. 2010 (San Diego’s East County) -- Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is confirmed to appear with other dignitaries at a groundbreaking hosted by San Diego Gas & Electric Company (SDG&E) for Sunrise Powerlink slated for 11 a.m. today (originally set for 9 a.m.)

 

In response, the Protect Our Communiities Foundation is organizing a protest, calling the groundbreaking “premature” since three active lawsuits against Sunrise Powerlink are currently in the courts—any one of which could potentially halt the project.


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FIRE CREW FINDS GAS LEAK IN LA MESA

 

November 29, 2010 (La Mesa)—A Heartland Fire & Rescue engine from La Mesa was driving northbound on Bancroft Drive when crew members smelled a strong odor of natural gas yesterday morning. The fire crew stopped to investigate the smell and determined that there was gas coming from underground at 5033 Bancroft Drive.


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READER'S EDITORIAL: PREMATURE OBITUARY ISSUED FOR FEDERAL CASE AGAINST SUNRISE POWERLINK THAT IS STILL GOING STRONG


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READER’S EDITORIAL: PRICE GOUGING BY SDG&E—RESULTS OF DEREGULATING A MONOPOLY: A PARTIAL VICTORY

 

Editor's note:  After receiving a refund for excessive charges to relocate a gas meter, Joel Harrison says he found a new form of overcharging--this time for “estimated” meter readings when his yard was easily accessible to the meter reader. Neighbors were also overcharged, according to Harrison. How many other homeowners were, too? If this has happened to you, please post a comment in the comment section below.

 


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FOREST SERVICE DENIES APPEAL OVER POWERLINK, CLEARS WAY FOR LITIGATION

 

By Miriam Raftery
 

October 24, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – The U.S. Forest Service’s Regional Forester Randy Moore has upheld the Record of Decision (ROD) approving construction of Sunrise Powerlink, SDG&E's high-voltage transmission line slated to cross 19 miles of National Forest land in Cleveland National Forest as well as 49 miles of Bureau of Land Management land.


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