BLM to hold public meetings for 300 MW Bonanza Solar facility

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The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) unveiled a public review process on the Bonanza Solar Project, a proposed 300 MW (AC) utility-scale solar and battery storage project sited in Clark and Nye Counties, Nevada.

A 45-day public scoping period ends on July 20, 2023 for the project being developed by EDF Renewables North America. During the scoping period, there will be a combination of virtual and in-person public workshops:

  • The Nevada State Office will conduct a virtual workshop on June 26, 2023 at 5:30 p.m. PT (8:30 p.m. ET).
  • The first of two in-person workshops takes place June 28, 2023, at 5 p.m. PT, at the Centennial Hills Library, Multipurpose Room, 6711 N. Buffalo Drive, Las Vegas, Nev.
  • The second of two in-person workshops takes place June 29, 2023, at 5 p.m. PT, at the Indian Springs Community Center, 715 Gretta Lane, Indian Springs, Nev.

Each workshop will start with a presentation followed by public comment and question and answer sessions in an open house format.

In August 2021, EDF Renewables began the permitting process for the vast 5,133 acre Bonanza Solar project, located on BLM public land about 45 miles northwest of Las Vegas and capable of producing 928 GWh per year of clean power. Additional oversight and input on the project is managed by the Nevada Renewable Energy Coordination Office in Reno, Nev., and the Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, respectively.

Bonanza Solar’s location in relation to NV Energy’s Greenlink West project, a transmission corridor providing clean power between Las Vegas and Reno, Nev. (Image: BLM)

Bonanza Solar’s environmental review and permitting process is expected to conclude by January 2026, with a right-of-way authorization by December 2025 and environmental impact statement (EIS) to be issued by Q3 2025, according to the federal infrastructure projects permitting database.

Additional project proposals for the utility-scale solar-plus-storage project include building a main access road, a 5.5 mile 230 kV power generation tie-in line, an on-site power sub-station, operations and maintenance building, fencing and telecommunications tower.

EDF’s preliminary plan of development calls for the construction of the solar project with crystalline silicon, cadmium telluride (CdTe), or Copper Indium Gallium Selenide (CIGS) solar panels up to 660 watts per module. Panels will be installed using single-axis tracking systems interconnect using 5 MW inverter stations.

The project has proposed a 300 MW or up to 1.2 GWh battery storage facility located adjacent to the 220 kV on-site substation, with the battery facility requiring a separate 35 acres of its own.

A key driver to the utility solar-plus-storage project is its strategic location to interconnect with utility NV Energy’s 350-mile high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line, Greenlink West. The 525 kV transmission line, whose schedule in-service date is December 2026, is being built to connect the local grids of Reno and North Las Vegas with 4 gigawatts or more of clean power from abundant Nevada desert solar facilities.

According to its website, EDF Renewables has developed 709 MW generating capacity solar projects and about 1.38 GWh of energy storage projects in Nevada.

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