Bureau of Land Management Grants Go Ahead to Oberon Solar Project
Updated: Aug 9, 2022
Project will create 750 union construction jobs and produce enough solar energy to power 142,000 homes.
As part of the Biden-Harris administration’s efforts to achieve 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2035 and meet the Energy Act of 2020 goal of permitting 25 gigawatts of renewable energy on public lands by 2025, the Bureau of Land Management has approved the Oberon Solar Project, which will generate up to 500 megawatts of renewable energy and have capacity for 200 megawatts of battery storage. The project will be built on approximately 2,600 acres of BLM-managed public lands near Desert Center in eastern Riverside County.
The decision authorizes a right-of-way for Oberon Solar, LLC to construct, operate, maintain, and decommission a photovoltaic solar facility. The project will create 750 union construction jobs and eight permanent jobs.
“The Oberon Solar Project is another example of how our public lands are playing a key role in contributing to the nation’s renewable energy portfolio. We’re grateful for the collaboration between Tribal governments, local communities, state regulators, industry, and other federal agencies that is shaping responsible development on America’s public lands for the benefit of current and future generations,” said BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning. The Oberon Solar Project will be located within an area analyzed and identified as suitable for renewable energy development as part of BLM’s Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan Land Use Plan (DRECP) Amendment. Oberon Solar is one of three DRECP projects announced by the Interior Department in December 2021, which represent the first to be approved.
The Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan covers 10.8 million acres of public lands spanning the desert regions of seven California counties and is a landscape-level plan streamlining renewable energy development, while conserving unique and valuable desert ecosystems and providing outdoor recreation opportunities.
Renewable energy — including solar, onshore and offshore wind, geothermal, and wave and tidal energy projects — will help communities across the country be part of the climate solution, while creating good-paying union jobs.
“The Oberon Solar Project underscores the Biden Administration’s commitment to reaching carbon-free electricity by 2035,” said BLM California State Director Karen Mouritsen. “BLM California continues to make numerous contributions to the nation’s renewable energy portfolio, by identifying public lands with significant solar and wind energy potential and significant geothermal energy resources.”
The Decision Record, Finding of No New Significant Impacts, Environmental Assessment, and associated documents are available on ePlanning at the Oberon Solar webpage at https://go.usa.gov/xfdH5.
Read press release on blm.gov