|A packed house for the LEAPS meeting at the VFW.|
What isn't complicated is the premise.
A premise that is quite old by this point in 2018, and one that I'd thought was killed off ten years ago. I remember laughing over the absurdity of it before Wildomar even became a city.
In short, the scheme envisions building a 5,000 acre feet reservoir in Decker Canyon.
The idea is to then pump water from Lake Elsinore up to it at night, then let it flow back to the lake during peak hours (presumably between 2:00pm and 8:00pm) when electricity rates are highest.
|This photo was taken off of Decker Canyon Road, from the approximate location indicated by the blue star in the graphic above. The arrow is pointing to the location of the yellow star in the previously mentioned graphic.|
In fact, the figures given by the speaker, John Pecora, stated that LEAPS would only recover 85% of the energy expended while getting the water to the upper reservoir when it's released for its midday journey back to the lake.
In other words, if they spend 100 units getting the water up, they only get back 85 units as it comes back down.
|Sounds like one of those "offers you can't refuse".|
It's certainly not about the environment, conservation, ecology, or green energy.
It's about money.
Pump the water up at night, at a net loss of electricity, and then collect higher fees from the rate payers as it trickles back down in the peak times.
Pretty clever... pretty cagey... pretty slimy in the real world.
Oh, and if this wasn't enough on it's own, anyone remember ENRON?
Yeah, according to what was said at the meeting, one of the key players in this is a former ENRON guy. He's the LEAPS project manager, David Kates.
As I said at the top of the blog, this is a weighty subject, and if you want more details, I'll post links at the bottom of the page for you to explore. Including one to a facebook page where you can get details from people that better know the topic.
|This empty field, at Grand and Santa Rosa Drive in Lakeland Village, is the location that John Pecora indicated would be the future location of the pumping station/powerhouse.|
• Nevada Hydro is seeking to use a 2006 environmental report/document for the current application.
• Next phase is NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) which requires the applicant to work in harmony with the environment and the community.
• There are about 40 to 45 pump storage projects licensed in the USA. Only 12 of those are 500 Mega Watts or greater, like the LEAPS. Of those 12, only one is built by an existing lake — Michigan. The amount of water that project uses is insignificant to the level of the water in Lake Michigan.
• A pump storage project the size of LEAPS has never been licensed to this point.
|My apologies for the blurry photo. Apparently my Samsung doesn't do so well in low light conditions. This was shared at the meeting denoting the 12 500MW, or greater, pump storage projects in the USA.|
• During construction of the reservoir and damn, truckloads of dirt will be hauled from from Santa Rosa Drive, up Ortega Highway, south on South Main Divide and dumped at Decker Canyon, from 6:00am to 3:00pm, at a clip of every six minutes. A total of 2.5 million cubic feet of dirt will be moved.
• The approximate surface of the reservoir is said to be about 100-200 acres. Lake Elsinore is about 3,500 acres. In brief, the lake is shallow, and the reservoir will be deep.
• There will be a daily "tidal action" at the lake, which will expose a "muddy expanse of shoreline" for a period of time while the water is released down the hill.
• They have to maintain the lake at between 1240-1245 elevation. If they can't provide a contract showing they can get the necessary water, they cannot get a permit.
• Contrary to rumors that the electricity will be heading to San Diego, the electricity will just be going to the grid.
• The entire project will be underground.
• Form letters don't work as well as personal letters/emails, and phone calls, that outline how the project will adversely affect you.
• The lake will be closed between one and two years during construction.
• The project will be crossing an active earthquake fault.
"Read the NEPA documents, on almost every page, there is a reference to harmonious with humans. Now everybody hates the EPA, everybody hates NEPA, but you have to remember, most of the [pump storage] projects that are licensed by FERC are in rural areas, there aren't a whole lot of people around.
This (LEAPS) is different, this is in the middle of a heavily populated area with property owners around the lake."
—John Pecora, February 26, 2018
|These are contacts of the key figures, and John Pecora encouraged those impacted to|
try calling them and be ready to explain your damages and what compensation you want.
• The city of Lake Elsinore, the County of Riverside, EVMWD, Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez, US Representative Ken Clavert, among others, have all gone on the record being against this project.
• The project is suing EVMWD.
After the hour long meeting, I went up to Lake Elsinore city councilmember Steve Manos and asked his take on the meeting, if the info seemed legit.
|This is the first page you see when you visit the LEAPS Hydro webpage. The gall to claim they will be providing "clean, reliable power" when it'll produce a net loss of 15% when the scores are tallied up. A link to this page is provided below.|
Link to the Official Response (288 pages) by LEAPS Hydro, dated December 17, 2017
Link to LEAPS Hydro (the picture above)
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