Supervisors of San Diego County Approves a Plan to Smoothen Renewable Energy Process
Unanimously, energy projects’ environmental review process gained the San Diego County Board of Supervisors’ approval. The approval was to embrace a plan that would streamline the process, especially for projects in unincorporated areas. Consequently, renewable energy project developers’ challenges will decrease since everything would be easy, smooth, and well-defined. From design reviews to a site plan, the approval would mean enhancing and simplifying them more than they are at the moment. Project development requirements would also be favored, no doubt.
In a presentation, the County Planning & Development Services illustrated the benefits that San Diego County residents stand to benefit from if the number of renewable energy products increased. With incorporating even the wind turbines and solar panels, the energy supply would increase, no doubt. Equally important, the likes of weather-proofing incentives would facilitate the reduction of energy consumption. Last but not least, the increase would create more than 40,000 jobs.
Nathan Fletcher, the San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chairman, said that the renewable energy plan had been a continuous process up until the meeting day. It is only fair to acknowledge that the board has been focusing on promoting local renewable energy sources for more than ten decades now. One notable approval took place in May 2013. It aimed at encouraging more turbine development opportunities by streamlining and clarifying the wind energy regulations that existed at that time. It has played the trick quite well for the last eight years; unincorporated areas in the county have experienced installations of up to 35 turbines.
The board also voted for the establishment of a community choice energy program in Oct 2019. It would help unincorporated areas in renewable energy matters, including hitting 90% renewable energy consumption by 2030. It also issued an order to staff to look for renewable energy project options in April.
According to Supervisor Terra Lawson-Remer, so far, so good as far as the plan for renewables process is concerned. On the other hand, Supervisor Joel Anderson insisted that it is high time that the county explored all the renewable options. He gave an example of generating power from waves through wave technology. On Nov 8, choices of unincorporated areas’ streamlined renewable energy projects were tabled. This discussion took place during the quarterly meeting of the county Community Planning and Sponsor Group chairs.
On the day of the approval, there was also the public comment period. One of the people who sired his opinion was the San Diego Gas & Electric public affairs manager Joe Gabaldon. He supported the plan wholeheartedly. The other speaker was Donna Tisdale, but she was not supporting the projects. On the contrary, the Boulevard Planning Group chair said that they would contribute to noise and fire issues while harming property values and well water.