News Release

Habitat Conservation Plan Proposed for Electrical Transmission Line Project in Tulare County

Plan to Help Offset Impacts to Threatened and Endangered Species

July 24, 2013

Media Contacts:
Sarah Swenty, (916) 414-6571; sarah_swenty@fws.gov

Sacramento – The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announces the availability of a draft Environmental Assessment on the proposed Cross Valley Transmission Line Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) prepared by Southern California Edison. The proposed HCP outlines strategies to avoid, minimize, and offset potential impacts to 4 federally endangered, 5 federally threatened, and 4 unlisted plant and animal species expected from the construction, operation, and future maintenance of a proposed 23-mile, 220-kV transmission line planned within the City of Visalia and in unincorporated Tulare County, California. 

With the proposed HCP, Southern California Edison seeks an incidental take permit for temporary and permanent impacts to approximately 154 acres of land that provide suitable breeding, foraging, or movement habitat to the 13 HCP covered species within a larger 3,385–acre HCP planning area.  To offset the project’s impacts to these species, Southern California Edison has proposed on-site avoidance and minimization measures, on-site riparian restoration, and will establish a habitat preserve or purchase credits at approved conservation-banks to permanently protect nearly 240 acres of high-quality breeding, foraging, and movement habitat to benefit the HCP’s covered species.

This announcement opens a 45-day comment period on the draft Environmental Assessment and the proposed HCP that will close September 9, 2013. The Federal Register notice, draft Environmental Assessment, and the proposed HCP are available at http://www.fws.gov/sacramento/.  

Comments can be sent by U.S. Mail or facsimile to: 
Mike Thomas, Habitat Conservation Planning Division
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Sacramento Fish and Wildlife Office
2800 Cottage Way, Room W-2605
Sacramento, California 95825
Fax: (916) 414-6713

America’s fish, wildlife, and plant resources belong to all of us, and ensuring the health of imperiled species a shared responsibility.  We’re working to actively engage conservation partners and the public in the search for improved and innovative ways to conserve and recover imperiled species.