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New Substation Proposed In Rural San Diego County

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Aired 1/25/10

Three energy projects are proposed for an area of southeastern San Diego County and across the Mexican border. One project includes a new electrical substation.

Three energy projects are proposed for an area of southeastern San Diego County and just across the Mexican border. One project includes a new electrical substation.

Jennifer Briscoe with San Diego Gas & Electric said the company's ECO Substation project is multifaceted.

It would build a state-of-the-art 500 kv substation and rebuild and modernize the 50-year-old Boulevard substation.

"And we'll be building a new 138 kv (transmission) line between ECO and Boulevard substations to provide a backup source of power for the communities of Boulevard, Jacumba and Manzanita," said Briscoe.

The ECO Substation would also provide a link to a project just across the border in Mexico proposed by Sempra Energy, SDG&E's parent company.

Along with the proposed Tule Wind project, the ECO Substation and the Mexico project require three new power transmission lines.

David Hogan with the Protect Our Communities Foundation said there are alternatives other than the proposed projects to generate power.

"There is abundant sunshine and abundant opportunities on rooftops and in parking lots for example to cover these areas with solar panels," said Hogan. "And that's going to provide an excellent renewable energy opportunity right where people live. And we don't have to have long-distance transmission infrastructure."

The process begins with public hearings Wednesday in Jacumba and Thursday in Boulevard.

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