You may copy and paste this letter to send to the Bureau of Land Management and Department of Energy, concerning the Solar Energy Study Areas proposed in the Southwest. Go to http://solareis.anl.gov/involve/comments/index.cfm to comment, and feel free to modiy the letter to include your favorite areas.
To Whom It May Concern,
The plans for a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) appear to be fast tracking the release of certain, environmentally sensitive public lands and opening them to solar energy development. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Department of Energy (DOE) need to consider the consequences of freeing up so much public land for only one use. This whole process needs to move at a slower pace in order to identify issues and impacts that will arise if this land is developed. Please consider the following issues:
1. The potential for specific negative impacts to each of the 24 study areas should be clearly explained. The maps fail to identify any local issues for the regions involved. These would include:
* Degradation of water resources from concentrated solar power
* Impacts to visual resources
* Impacts to flora and fauna
* Impacts to Federal/State Threatened and Endangered Species
* Impacts to cultural sites
* Impacts to Native American values
* Impacts to private property values
* Limiting access to public lands
2. The BLM and DOE should be scheduling public scoping meetings for communities near each of the 24 areas that are being considered for this proposal.
3. An Environmental Impact Statement should be written for each one of the 24 tracts of land considered in this proposal.
Thank you for your consideration,
(Your name and address here)