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California Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan Disappoints Wind Energy Industry

State and federal agencies today released for public review the draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP). The release comes nearly six years after California and the federal government announced an unprecedented effort to jointly collaborate on a land use plan intended to expedite renewable energy development while protecting the unique natural resources in the California desert. The draft Plan is being greeted with disappointment by CalWEA. "After years of trying to constructively engage in this process, we did not expect this plan to provide permitting efficiencies for wind energy. But it now appears that our worst fears are being realized: all five DRECP Plan Alternatives would largely end most wind energy development in California," said Nancy Rader, Executive Director of CalWEA.

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Fast Facts about California Wind Energy

+ Wind energy projects totaling approximately 5,812 megawatts (MW) of capacity are operating in California today,1 providing enough electricity to power more than 2 million California households.2 This represents more than a tripling of wind energy capacity since California's Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) law was adopted in 2002.

+ In 2012, California wind projects generated 9,152 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of electricity - 4.6% of all power generated within California.3 In the same year, out-of-state wind projects generated 9,983 GWh of electricity for California, representing 10% of total power imports.3 Combined, wind projects supplied 6.3% of California's total system power,3 enough to power all homes in Sacramento, Santa Clara, and San Diego Counties combined.2

+ CalWEA expects wind energy to provide close to 7% of California's electricity supply in 2014.

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