SunZia Southwest Transmission Project
Dear Mr. Garcia:
I am a biologist, a teacher, and a frequent visitor to
the meeting of BLM officials and the Redington Natural Resource
Conservation District Board of Supervisors.
Here are my comments on the proposed SunZia Transmission
Of the many routes under consideration for approval by
the BLM, none should be undertaken except those in areas already
disturbed by highway or energy transmission infrastructures, such as
the existing I-10 corridor or
the route through the
reject these on the basis of cash economic concerns reveals an
unaffordable and archaic way of thinking about economy.
We must see economics in terms of the planet’s resources
and living systems, rather than financial speculation on the part of
big investors. We must understand that all of us are investors here,
including human citizens and wildlife and generations to come. To
think of saving money by running 300 16-story transmission towers
along the San Pedro River Valley, with the associated bulldozing,
tree removal, and road construction, is to think in an unthinkable
way, one that only appeals to the wallet.
This project has been touted as promoting “green
energy,” but we know there has been no energy source identified at
all. In the end, these towers could be used to carry electricity
from nuclear plants or coal-fired plants. The investors will be
happy to provide access to the first customer with the need and the fee.
SunZia, if it should come to pass, will provide a
negligible income for the use of public lands. This leasing is
practically a giveaway and should not be considered an argument for
proceeding. The real cost of the project will be felt in interrupted
wildlife corridors, disturbed habitat, and in the opening up of wild
lands to unmonitored use by all-terrain and off-road vehicles. This
will inevitably lead to erosion, loss of vegetation, and siltation in
the aquatic habitats.
If the transmission towers are to be built at all, they
should never be routed in the
further that huge projects such as this one will be seen by some as
holding out the possibility that we Americans can continue the
unsustainable way of life we see today which has resulted in so much
irrevocable damage to earth, air, and water, and in terrible species
extinctions and poor prospects for the futures of all of us.
We must downsize our projects, our lifestyles.
Electricity should be produced in
transported hundreds of miles
undescribed—probably with intentions of going all the way to the more
profitable markets in
transportation schemes should be balanced with conservation
projects. We should put our investment there, not in giant towers
and roads across wilderness areas in the southwest.
Please keep SunZia away from the San Pedro.
Bonner J. McAllester