Los Alamos Power Pool Planning for Two New Electrical Lines

It was announced at the June 5th Los Alamos County Board of Public Utilities meeting that there are two proposals to bring approximately 50 or more megawatts of solar electricity to the County and Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), a federal Department of Energy (DOE) facility.  One of the County’s goals is to develop and strengthen partnerships with Jemez Pueblo and Pueblo de San Ildefonso in their efforts to develop solar farms.  https://losalamos.legistar.com/Calendar.aspx , Agenda Packet No. 18773-24 “Presentation and Review of Distributed Generation Impacts.”

Last year, LANL proposed to construct a second 14-mile long, 115-kilovolt electrical line to mirror the existing line across the Caja del Rio in Santa Fe County, the Rio Grande and the Pajarito Plateau to bring 173 megawatts of electricity to LANL for its supercomputers.  LANL also proposed upgrades to substations and infrastructure across the Plateau.  A public review and comment period was provided on a draft environmental assessment as required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).  Many of the thousands of comments asked for a full environmental impact statement.  LANL has not announced any decision as of yet.  http://nuclearactive.org/february-15th-public-meeting-about-the-proposed-lanl-electrical-line-across-the-caja-del-rio/

Importantly, since 1985, Los Alamos County and LANL have pooled their power resources through an Electric Energy and Coordination Agreement, also known as the Los Alamos Power Pool, or LAPP.  Generally LANL consumes about 80 percent of the total energy produced or purchased by the LAPP.  https://www.losalamosnm.us/News-articles/New-Solar-and-Battery-Contracts-Set-to-Double-Clean-Electricity-Supply

One of the County’s future energy goals is to upgrade the electric supply and distribution system.  To meet these goals, the County now is proposing to conduct an Electric System Power Study to determine future system requirements.  https://losalamos.legistar.com/Calendar.aspx , Agenda Packet No. 18773-24 “Presentation and Review of Distributed Generation Impacts.”

NOW, through the Power Pool, there is a need for a study.  This was not the case during the NEPA process for the proposed electrical line across the Caja del Rio.  LANL did not describe the need for the 173 megawatts.

During the environmental assessment public process, the Power Pool obtained 170 megawatts from a project in San Juan County, called the Foxtail Flats Solar and Battery Energy Storage System.  http://nuclearactive.org/los-alamos-county-moves-forward-with-solar-power-through-proposed-electrical-line-across-the-caja-del-rio/

Another County goal is “to develop and strengthen partnerships with stakeholders.”  The objective is “to continue to coordinate infrastructure construction projects as early as possible between DOE, San Ildefonso Pueblo, Department of Public Utilities and Public Works, especially for communications infrastructure.”  The action is to “cooperate with DOE on a third transmission line and Partner with the Jemez Pueblo to develop a new power source into Los Alamos.”  https://losalamos.legistar.com/Calendar.aspx , Agenda Packet No. 18773-24 “Presentation and Review of Distributed Generation Impacts.”

There was discussion during the June 5th meeting, which can be viewed soon on the County’s website.  https://losalamos.granicus.com/ViewSearchResults.php?view_id=2&keywords=Board%20of%20Public%20Utilities


  1. Friday, June 7th at noon –Join the weekly peaceful protest for nuclear disarmament on the four corners of Alameda and Sandoval in downtown Santa Fe with Veterans for Peace, CCNS, Nuclear Watch NM, Loretto Community, Pax Christi and others.


  1. Wednesday, June 19th at 6 pm – Albuquerque Center for Peace and Justice – A talk by Koohan Paik-Mander about The inherent fascism of algorithms … & the militarization of society. https://www.abqpeaceandjustice.org/events  



  1. Monday, May 20th PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD EXTENDED TO THURSDAY, JUNE 20th, 2024 – to EPA about its proposed rule allowing open burning / open detonation of hazardous wastes.  Use Earthjustice’s Action Alert to Ban the Practice of Open Burning and Open Detonation of Hazardous Wastes at:  https://earthjustice.org/action/ban-the-practice-of-open-burning-and-open-detonation-of-hazardous-wastes

 See the May 2nd Update for more information:  http://nuclearactive.org/public-comments-needed-to-ban-open-burning-and-open-detonation-of-pfas-toxic-and-carcinogenic-explosive-materials/



  1. Monday, July 1st – Friday, July 5th (no hearing on Th. July 4th) RESCHEDULED TO AUGUST 5th – 9th– NM Water Quality Control Commission public hearing about reuse of fracking waste continues.  https://www.defendnmwater.org/post/hearing-extended-into-july-so-far-fracking-waste-reuse-looks-as-risky-as-we-thought



  1. June 17th to 24th MOVED TO SEPTEMBER 16th to 22nd Global Week of Action – No Money for Nuclear Weapons, by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN). Join the efforts to push back against the unacceptable squandering of vast sums of money on weapons of mass destruction ($82.9 billion in 2022).  https://www.icanw.org/global_week_of_action_on_nuclear_spending



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