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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Chino Hills Obstruction of the Tehachapi Renewable Transmission Project

The Center supports the timely completion of the Tehachapi Renewable Transmission Project (TRTP).   The California Public Utility Commission (CPUC) should reject the Chino Hills underground transmission line proposal.  The Center opposes undergrounding the Chino Hills section of the line because it is an unnecessary alteration of an already approved plan. 
The Center is particularly concerned about threats to a project that provides emission free electricity to Californians.  The California Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) program requires investor-owned utilities, electric service providers, and community choice aggregators to increase procurement from eligible renewable energy resources to 33% of total procurement by 2020.  California ratepayers do not need the significant increase in the cost of the transmission line simply to appease the aesthetic requirements of some stakeholders. 
The underground proposal undermines the CPUC's approval of the Alta Wind Power Project in the Tehachapi area, one of the largest wind energy contracts in the United States.  The underground proposal is also unacceptable because 12 of 16 transmission structures have already been completed as part of the approved overhead position in the existing utility right-of-way corridor.     

53 comments:

Anonymous said...

Last I head it's a safety issue not an "aesthetic" issue. You obviously have no facts here so good job making up your own news and passing it as truth!

Anonymous said...

The impact on housing values and safety of residents must take precedence over the cost to bury the lines. 500KV has never been run this close to families with children in our entire nation.

Anonymous said...

Also the original poster Norris is a bureaucrat living in Washington DC- let the residents of California decide what is right for them. I live within sight of the towers, they are dangerous. Another green project gone wrong. It's harmful and SCE and CPUC's disregard for the safety of Californians is outrageous.

Anonymous said...

I see that your president lives in Washington, DC. Please visit Chino Hills, and see where these towers are located. Some, are 10-20 feet from the backyards of families!
Come visit, then give a testimony.

Norris McDonald said...

Anonymous posters: People come to Washington, DC all the time with their problems. I do not dismiss them because they are not Inside the Beltway. Have any of you been to Los Angeles in summer? We need green power to reduce smog in Southern California. I am in Southern California often and I am also a chronic acute asthmatic. I understand your NIMBY concerns, but there is a bigger issue here. Moreover, have you looked at you electricity bill lately. How high do you want the bills to go? Do you really want the ratepayers to pick up a half a billion to a billion dollar tab to put those lines underground? I don't think so. Going underground is simply not a viable option.

Anonymous said...

to the person who wrote this:
i invite you to live in chino hills nearby this power pole. you will know why we, HFTH and the City of Chino Hills fight so hard on this.
we are not against the Renewable energy project. but we need SCE to do it right way.
The priority here is to protect human beings first.
unless you are a beast yourself who does not care human beings.

Anonymous said...

Good reporting requires good research. You need to see how SCE made a huge mistake in the first place with the location of the lines, which legally is not allowed. They need to fix their mistakes. It's not the fault of Chino Hills residents.

Anonymous said...

It is an option nimby, and we live in chino hills for a reason .
SCE is a monopoly who has been allowed to push its weight around for a long time. It has shown little respect for people and their families.

Yes our electric bills are far to high but then again who do you think pays for them! SCE made the choice to put our. Family's in danger so they should be required to foot the bill what ever the cost ,underground is part or that.

David Reed said...

The last thing that the citizens of Chino Hills needs is a lobbyist bureaucrat telling us what is "best" in our city. We live here! We have to deal with the possible health issues. We have to deal with the decrease in our property values. We have to stare at these monster towers every day. Michael Peavey, the head of the CPUC, toured our neighborhood and that was enough to convince him that the issue needed to be reassessed which is where we are today. The cost to individual rate payers will not have a huge impact, but the removal of these towers certainly will! Visit our neighborhood before you make a judgement based on cost alone and decide if you would live in a home in the shadow of one of these 500 kv towers. My guess is, you would not. Undergrounding these lines is a viable option that needs to be fully investigated and a decision needs to be made based on ALL factors, not just cost.

Don Hodson said...

It is hard to believe that anyone who pretends to be for the environment would approve the monstrous power lines running so close to the homes in family neighborhoods. It would not be allowed this close to schools in Los Angeles. The original right of way for the transmission lines were for a MUCH smaller project with less voltage and much shorter towers. This is another case of profits above common sense. It is about time that the environment includes cities that real people live in.
Don Hodson- Chino Hills resident

Norris McDonald said...

David thanks for posting your name. Anonymous people can suggest that I am a 'beast' but such ad homs do not help anyone. I see I will have to visit Chino Hills. But I understand high power lines and their proximity to homes. Wasn't the 220 kv line there before? Were the houses there first or was the 220kv line there first. If so, then why did people move so close to this utility right of way?

Anonymous said...

Norris,
I dont believe you are a beast. It is just very obvious you are not well informed about this issue. These towers are 200ft tall and will carry 500,000 volts of electricity within 70 ft of peoples homes. They are dangerous! This project was rail roaded through our City when a State Park with existing powerlines was available about 2 miles South. SCE didnt want to impact wildlife. However its ok to run these dangerous towers over the heads of Families and children where they eat ,sleep and play! You really need to tour the City to see for yourself. You will be sickened by the blatant disregard for the residents of Chino Hills by a So Cal Edision.

Unknown said...

Let me point out that when all of the California Public Utility Commissioners who made the initial decision to approve the project visited Chino Hills, they made an unprecedented decision to place a "hold" on the project since they saw what a mistake had been made. Health impacts and quality of life are important for all of us! The State of California would not allow a school district to build a school as close as these lines are to our homes. Would you want to live 70 feet from these lines? Or send you child to a school as close as our homes are from these 200 ft tall 500kv towers? Perhaps you should visit hopeforthehills.org and schedule a visit before making such judgments on what appears to be utility focussed limited information.

Joanne Genis said...

First of all, I'm glad to see you are located in Washington DC and the word has spread about the biggest transmission renewable project in the United States (TRTP) and the impact it has on our community of Chino Hills, CA. We are not against GREEN energy, but unfortunately this is not about going/being GREEN, it's about the color GREEN of money, which is lining the pockets of the executives of Southern California Edison (SCE). I do not think you have done your homework on how this project is affecting our community and the poor decision that SCE has made to construct it in an inadequate size easement. By the way, SCE has exaggerated their figures on the cost to bury the project. There are contingencies on top of contingencies, in their figures that they have presented to the CPUC. NO ONE, AND I MEAN NO ONE, can understand the impact these 200 ft. towers have on the many homes that will be as close as 50 ft. to the lines (if strung), until they see the towers in person. When the CA. Public Utility Commissioner (CPUC) visited Chino Hills and took a tour of the towers and saw the impact they have on our community, it was right after that tour that the President of the CPUC put a "Halt Order" on the project in our city to reevaluate the situation. The Calif. Dept. of Education (CDE) has established setback limits of 350 ft. to place 500 kV next to a school, but Edison feels it okay to put the lines next to the homes where our children live 24/7/365. You mentioned about having a health condition, but there are residents that live along this easement that have a weakened-immune system, and pacemakers, that have been told by their physicians that it would be of their best interest to move. This is also a Federal issue and two U.S. Congressman, Gary Miller, and Ed Royce held a U.S. Congressional Hearing here in Chino Hills to address the issue of not being able to obtain a FHA loan, due to some of the homes are in the "fall zone" of the towers. If Europe can bury their lines, then so can the U.S.... It is a viable option.

Joanne Genis said...

First of all, I'm glad to see you are located in Washington DC and the word has spread about the biggest transmission renewable project in the United States (TRTP) and the impact it has on our community of Chino Hills, CA. We are not against GREEN energy, but unfortunately this is not about going/being GREEN, it's about the color GREEN of money, which is lining the pockets of the executives of Southern California Edison (SCE). I do not think you have done your homework on how this project is affecting our community and the poor decision that SCE has made to construct it in an inadequate size easement. By the way, SCE has exaggerated their figures on the cost to bury the project. There are contingencies on top of contingencies, in their figures that they have presented to the CPUC. NO ONE, AND I MEAN NO ONE, can understand the impact these 200 ft. towers have on the many homes that will be as close as 50 ft. to the lines (if strung), until they see the towers in person. When the CA. Public Utility Commissioner (CPUC) visited Chino Hills and took a tour of the towers and saw the impact they have on our community, it was right after that tour that the President of the CPUC put a "Halt Order" on the project in our city to reevaluate the situation. The Calif. Dept. of Education (CDE) has established setback limits of 350 ft. to place 500 kV next to a school, but Edison feels it okay to put the lines next to the homes where our children live 24/7/365. You mentioned about having a health condition, but there are residents that live along this easement that have a weakened-immune system, and pacemakers, that have been told by their physicians that it would be of their best interest to move. This is also a Federal issue and two U.S. Congressman, Gary Miller, and Ed Royce held a U.S. Congressional Hearing here in Chino Hills to address the issue of not being able to obtain a FHA loan, due to some of the homes are in the "fall zone" of the towers. If Europe can bury their lines, then so can the U.S.... It is a viable option.

Scott Eckersall said...

These 198 foot tall towers are so much more than an aesthetic issue. Dismissing this as a simple "NIMBY" problem is a basic, oversimplified and uninformed viewpoint. Aside from the possible health risks associated with EMF in such close proximity to densely populated areas, there are many other problems. We have seismic events here in California, and while the towers themselves will most likely remain intact in such an event, live transmission lines can and will fall on occupied structures, critical facilities, and major emergency routes, cutting off help when it's needed most. These events and occasional high winds frequently cause arcing wires to ignite vegetation below. In a wildland environment this is not such an issue, but in this case, again, it will occur in a densely populated area. Fire agencies sometimes use airships to help fight these fires, something that is impossible to do if it's burning within the right-of-way, directly under towers. Local law enforcement also uses air support to patrol communities like this, and these towers add an additional safety hazard. While the initial cost of burying the lines is certainly more, has anyone asked for an independent audit of these costs? Has anyone asked for the cost savings to SCE in today's dollars, of the reduced vegetation management and many other maintenance requirements over the years ahead?

Unknown said...

The existing 220 lines had been deactivated for over 15 years, and residents were told there were no plans to every activate the lines when they purchased their homes. And we should trust SCE?

Anonymous said...

CAN SOME TELL SHUT UP TO NORRIS MCDONAL AND LET BUILD SAME SIZE TOWER TO HIS FRONT YARD AND BACK YARD AND THAN SEE WHAT SHOULD HE HAVE TO SAY SHUT UP FOR ONCE!!

Anonymous said...

I also support renewable energy and have a PV array on my property. The issue is the method employed here as well as safety concerns. There were viable alternatives in the form of the corridor used by at least five other existing high tension lines, passing through non-residential areas to go in the same basic direction. Edison chose to use an easement set aside for a much lower voltage line, overburdening it to the point that safety is a definite concern. To secure a toehold, the towers in the city went up first and very quickly, before opposition could be marshaled. Now it is too expensive to remove them? I don't live under the towers, but although I support renewable energy, I have some concerns for my fellow human beings as individuals, not just in the aggregate. It is fairly easy to support a cause like green energy and ignore the families involved, just because it doesn't affect you directly.

Bud Turner said...

The old power lines were inactive and even if they were active they would have been at less than half the power. You are correct in that you should visit Chino Hills and see for yourself. It would be catastrophic if one of these towers were to fall, lets say, during an earthquake..

Anonymous said...

It definitely seems like you would benefit from seeing how close the towers are to homes and knowing all the facts before commenting on this topic. you will be surprised by what you see and wont have to continue with the discussion you are having right now.

Lindsay said...

@Norris,

Your "reporting" is inaccurate. Yes, we are well aware of the fact that our rates may/will go up. However, considering the massive EMF radiation that would be released by 20-story tall poles carrying 500kV of electricity, the modest increase in rates is an extremely small price to pay for avoiding the massive health problems associated with the Corona Effect of EMF. You asked if a 220kV line was there before - those lines had been inactivated for years. The nearby residents knew that those lines were there, and purchased property adjacent to the utility right of way knowing that those lines could be reactivated. But those towers were roughly 50 feet tall, with a right of way large enough (100 ft) to fit the entire tower if it happened to fall. In a large earthquake (entirely possible, as we're very near the San Andreas fault line, with our own branch line running right underneath the city), these mega towers would fall far beyond the existing right of way. Furthermore, your earlier comment of "have you been to Los Angeles in summer" is insulting in the extreme. We live a scant half an hour from there (in decent traffic), so I'd say the odds of us having been there in the summer are significantly greater that the odds of your having been there in the summer, but also, our weather systems are virtually the same, given our proximity. We live with the pollution on a daily basis - we are all very well aware of the implications of pollution. And I, too, and am ashtma and allergy sufferer. And I, too, spent part of my life living in Washington, DC. It is, indeed, a wonderful city. But Chino Hills is, too. I hope you do take the opportunity to come out here some day and see for yourself what we are so upset about. It truly is not merely a NIMBY attitude of being upset that we have large towers to look at - we are concerned for our health and safety. Next time, perhaps less vitriol and more investigation, please.

David Reed said...

Norris,
Yes, there were 220 kv poles prior to these being installed, but they haven't been active for several years. I have lived here about eleven years and they were obviuosly here when I moved, but they were not nearly as large and obtrusive as the new, larger towers. If you were to visit and see the close proximity to homes I believe you would have a completely different opinion. We would welcome your visit and comments AFTER you see the real situation we are facing as a community.

Raphael said...

No, there was no 220kv lines there before but they want 550K lines now!

Amazing to me to think in the name of renewable energy people would think its OK to endanger lives just because they don't live there or they are concerned that their electricity bill will go up, how Ignorant!

Watch the video below and lets put these monsters next to your home... Than maybe you will understand how incredibly stupid SCE was to try and get away with this travesty going down the heart of the city of Chino Hills!

http://youtu.be/3hDwt4mgEMU

Scott McLeod said...

Yes, Norris, you really must visit Chino Hills and see for yourself what is going on and educate yourself further on the history and health concerns involved before spouting your opinions as if you see the bigger picture and we do not. We fully support green energy and have no interest in standing in the way of this overall project. That said, placing these dangerously high power lines so close in proximity to our homes in this unprecedented manner without further due process is just wrong. Unless you are an SCE tool or have no concern for the well-being of families (or both), you should be more supportive of our redress.

Agnes Thornton said...

Please do your homework first before posting... your article about Chino Hills TRTP is obvious that you have no idea what is going on here. I propose that you visit our community and we will be glad to give you a tour... then and only then can you report about it and tell the truth. You mentioned in your blog that you visit SoCAL often. I urge you to go to Chino Hills and let us know when that may be. Also, for more info please go to.... http://www.hopeforthehills.org/. I pray that you will be enlightened and see what the residents of Chino Hills are really fighting for... our children, our health and safety, our future, OUR LIVES.... thank you.

LiLi Cunha said...

I love the Green Energy lovers. It would be nice if you did some research before you shoved your "well intended ...." views and projects on the rest of society. Your Wind Powered project was forced on SCE (with no funding to back it up) guess who's going to have to pay for your "great" idea, all of SCE customers. SCE took the cheapest route (understood) right through a fully build out town when just 10 miles south of our city is plenty of low density open spaces, a state park but the other GREEN people objected to building High powered lines in the right of way of wild animals. So all that is left is for the city to swallow and learn to live with High Voltage lines over the areas where families with small children live and play ( with unknown health risks facing our future), or we fight. We choose to fight. Undergrounding these lines will guarantee a safer future for the citizens of Chino Hills. SCE will be the first US company to match the Europeans which are outdoing us in the latest technologies (shame on the US). PLEASE RESEARCH YOUR TOPIC BEFORE SPEWING YOUR ILL THOUGHT OUT IDEALS.

Dorothy said...

I have lived close to SCE easement since 1997. The 220kv lines were NEVER ACTIVATED. It is my understanding they have been there dormant since the 40's. The tract of homes I live in was built in the 70's. This easement was never meant to accommodate 200 ft. 500 kv towers!

LiLi Cunha said...

I recommend that you read the facts in the blog posted in your own page at http://cenvironment.blogspot.com/2013/03/trtp-cpuc-order-to-analyze-underground.html

These are not low voltage lines going through a community. These are HIGH voltage lines with untested future health issues being run in some cases as close as 40 feet from some homes. This has never been done before. The children of Chino Hills should not be used as "lab rats" , there is nothing "GREEN" about using human beings as testing items.

Kevin Smith (resident of Chino Hills) said...

It is interesting that the center claims to be dedicated to protecting – among other things – “human, animal and plant ecologies…” and still take an official position of endorsing the construction of 200 foot tall towers within the fall zone of family residences. If 500kv is so safe, why must it be transmitted on 200 foot towers? The way that this article is written, it seems that the center’s real objective is protecting Edison’s money. Drafting and publishing an article such as this – and taking an official stance without first visiting the community and speaking with those personally involved – is irresponsible and shameful in the extreme. If you do decide to visit our community, Mr. McDonald, perhaps you would like to purchase a home in Chino Hills for you and your children; thanks to Edison, you can buy one very cheaply now.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Norris, you need to see those humongous electric towers to believe how horrendously oversized they are. Many people will develop health problems in the future should these towers remain. Would you be willing to purchase and raise your children in one of the homes that are in the shadows of these towers? We moved to Chino Hills because of the rolling hills and country-like setting so unique here. The sheep are enjoying the grass from our nearby hills at this very moment. Wake up and get real. We are living, breathing humans who should come before any large company who proclaims they can do whatever they want with their "right away."

Charles De Long said...

I'd rather save human lives than squirrel lives. Get your facts straight!

Gary said...

Mr. Norris and your organization, I live below two pole and there is one on the edge of the exit to our community. I moved to this location 18 years ago when the old towers, (100' high) were not visible and were not in use. One day last summer I was standing in my yard and I looked up and there was a 300' tower overhanging my yard. For you to reference the fact that the poles were there before is not a good excuse for allowing this project to continue. The project was slipped through on our residents without our awareness of the magnitude of the towers (which are so much taller than before they need red flashing lights to alert aircraft). The increased cost of electricity in Southern California is because of the mandated requirement that about 30% of all our energy be must be provided by wind, sun or water not coal or gas. The cost of this electricity is about 40% higher than our current source. The need for these new poles is to meet this "green" need, but at the expense of our health and property values. You have no idea how outrageous these towers look and where they are located. And, I am born and raised in California. I've lived here over 50 years. Your comment about the "Summer air" does not reference how much better it has been over the past decades. I lived in the foothills and as a teenager, I could not see the mountains. Now I see them daily unless there is the native morning fog that struggles sometimes to dissipate by the end of the day. And, by the way, there are way more people and cars and trucks now than in 1974. You should really check what the air in our basin looked like before the Kaiser steel plant was closed in 1983. To me this issue is health of our very kid populous community and the severe detriment to our property values. You suggested to one person to move. It would be very difficult for many because their home values will take a significant hit. I know mine will. Remember, when we moved here the poles were non-operable and 1/3rd the size. Your suggestion to look at the greater good should not be at the expense of the individual of the society. And yes, we all like electricity, so please don't go there. But frankly, I'm pretty good with conservation rather than the way overpriced and inefficient renewable sources, that are too costly right now. I have changed all bulbs to LED's, timers and sensors in the rooms and more efficient appliances. So personally I find it a punishment that the government needs to intervene to mandate the type of power I have to have, even if it is at a 40% higher cost, and it effects my community health and property values.

Charles Johnston said...

To address Mr. McDonalds' comment re. "Wasn't the 220kV line there before?" "... why did people move so close to the utility right of way?" The 220kV line was abandoned long ago, and Edison was supposed to have removed the towers. The 220kV towers were only 72 feet tall. The 500kV towers are 208 feet tall. No change to the right of way width. This is like saying, "there was a stream near your house, so why are you complaining that they dredged it up and run oil tankers through it?" This is a good example of why I have to constantly apologize for my "green" lifestyle and beliefs. Mr. McDonald believes that any smaller group of individuals should abdicate their rights in favor of the majority. I look at the 4 compelling options that the city proposed to avoid this entire issue when it started, all viable with much less impact than the current towers, and watched them bulldozed by Edison, and now backed up by environmentalists who care about the environment, but not the people living in it. I'm sure that Mr. McDonald would have no issues raising his family underneath 500kV towers and he certainly puts no credence on the known health risks with high EMF exposure over time. Too bad he wasn't around before Edison chose to muscle this project through to offer suggestions to the families who are stuck under the towers with homes that they will not be able to sell. I don't live under the towers, but I don't have to suffer to feel empathy for those that do.

Norris McDonald said...

I have read all of your comments. Yet nobody has described how undergrounding the lines would be 'safer,' except for your description of the potential EMF effects. I would be much more concerned about underground lines in that same location. One of my biggest concerns would be fugitive electricity. I think that could be much more dangerous that the potential EMF effects you described. Moreover, couldn't the 'undergrounding proposal' really be an attempt to get that entire 3 mile section rerouted?

Robbie Joshua said...

Our concerns are the health and safety of our community. We have never opposed clean energy as long as it is safe. Not to mention the declining property values of homes within 70 feet of the looming 200foot towers as well as the associated noise that would be generated by 500kv of electricity passing through those lines. The easements that SCE owns and put the initial towers with 220kv electricty were never designed to accomodate poles of this size. So home owners who initially bought along these easements had no idea of the future installation of these Monster Towers and the emfs associated with them! When the CPUC initially signed off on this project, they were looking at the architectural drawing, but after visitng Chino Hills and seeing the reality and the potential devastating impact, they halted the construction. We really would prefer that the route go through an unhabited section of a park, however we were not able to get that approved, so our only alternative is to go underground. To say that this is mainly an aesthetic issue is not factual! Also, the cost increase has been estimated to be less the $.50 per family state wide. What truly amazes me, is how people who are so uninformed make statements as though they were factual. The battle in Chino Hills has very little to do with aesthetics!!

Anonymous said...

The 200 foot 500,000 volt transmission lines were erected by SCE without any regard to in-depth safety and health concerns, regardless of Chino Hills’ effort s in presenting viable alternate options that should have been taken in consideration, aesthetics is NOT our main concern. Your Newsletter states that it opposes undergrounding because it is an unnecessary alteration on an already approved plan ?? Cost is YOUR concern? Who do you think pays for SCE’s Corporate perks, such as private planes, glamorous Boardrooms, catered service for their so called private lunches, dinners and Board Meeting travels. WE pay for their perks in addition to any $2,000.00 hammers and electrical wires that are wasted whenever work is done at the end of the day. Your Newsletter also states: “Altering an already approved plan “ DOES not mean that “an already approved plan’ is a “Good Plan”. Your Newsletter also states that: The Center’s concern of “threats” to a project that provides “emission free” electricity to Californians ----- You are not understanding, Chino Hills residents are cognizant of progress and the need for continued efforts to meet the needs of a growing infrastructure, however, what you call “Green Energy” should NOT come with sacrifice of human exposure to inhumane hazards - it’s like taking a pill for a stomach ache while the pill disintegrates your liver. While “emission free electricity is an awesome start to green energy, we are concerned with the other deadly cancers that “pill” to cure the stomach ache come with, such as:
•Health concerns -- exposure to EMF (radiation exposure) right underneath our homes – although
Other countries such as China, Israel, France, Canada have laws to avoid exposing human population
by forcing power companies to go underground
••SCE failed to comply - State Law Mandates keeping 500,000 volt transmission lines a minimum of 350 feet from schools or our homes, which some homes are currently 70 feet
•Toppling Towers = Disaster - Two well known earthquake fault lines go through our community and the “Tower Zone”
•Landslide hazards throughout the right of way
•SCE failed to comply - with FAA regulations since they did NOT consider the height of the towers
Therefore, exposing our homes to deal with warning flashing strobe lighting IF the transmission lines are wired, we will then be exposed to the over -head buzzing which is also a health hazard

Mr. McDonald, Environmentalist, I hope you do come and visit Chino Hills and you have a chance to speak with our Hope for the Hills President, Bob Goodwin, as a matter a fact, I wish you would have
Considered visiting before your comments were made --- and perhaps it might give you some insight of what our Community’s fight is all about. We DO NOT want to be the next San Bruno, we do not want to be a disaster waiting to happen such as Malibu, we do not want to be the next Redondo Beach nor what is happening to San Onofre…

MC
Hope for the Hills Community Member

Charles Johnston, PE said...

Mr. McDonald--
"fugitive" electricity is not an issue with properly designed underground Gas Insulated Lines. The ability to tightly space cables allows for greater cancellation of magnetic fields, and field levels drop off exponentially more quickly with underground lines than overhead transmission lines. Underground lines can be easily shielded to virtually eliminate any stray radiation or electrical energy. SCE is already undergrounding 500kV lines on a section of the Antelope-Pardee project in the interest of keeping the environment pristine and limiting the impact on wildlife. Do families with children deserve less consideration? If you haven't already noticed, this is an issue that many families will go to the mat on, and aligning your environmental group with this travesty will not gain you any support. I have supported the aims of your organization, but this stand has made me an active opponent.

Anonymous said...

Nope..The wide open Chino Hills State Park that already has an Edison right of way through it was deemed OFF THE TABLE because the lines might negatively impact the wildlife and visitors to the Park fro the small amount of time they are in the park. However it seems perfectly fine to impact the actual residents 24 /7 /365 to EMF.

Cheryl said...

The aesthetic requirements of some stakeholders?? Tell me, when do scientific studies showing higher rates of cancer, tumors, and birth defects, as well as concerns over noise pollution (described as the noise of a motorcycle going 3 mph that NEVER STOPS) translate into aesthetics? Your arrogance in ignoring these facts is astounding! Or is it possible, you haven't even bothered to look at ALL of the facts? The citizens of Chino Hills have not been fighting this battle for the last 5+ years over aesthetics! We have been fighting a corrupt power company who has the gall to advertise that they put "safety first"; when in reality, their high powered executives have a history of putting the almighty dollar first! If you don't believe that, do a little research into the major health and safety fiascos for the people of Redondo Beach, San Gabriel Valley/Pasadena, San Onofre (which affects all of Southern California), and Malibu; my guess is that as you read this, you have no idea what I am talking about, but suffice it to say, Chino Hills has no intention of being added to that list. As for the people who bought next to the Edison easement, count me as one of them. Thirty-seven years ago, my husband and I bought a home next to the Edison easement that had 75 foot towers, 220 K, and a 150 foot easement. By the way, in that extensive research you conducted so carefully, did you happen to come across the fact that in that entire 37 years and for as long before that as anyone could remember, those lines were considered inactive and only had a minimal amount of power flowing through them? Contrast that with today's situation of 200 foot towers in that same 150 foot easement, with the proposed wattage of 500K! DO THE MATH SIR! Last I checked, there is no way a 200 foot tower fits into a 150 easement without impacting (as in the very real possibility of the towers falling) the surrounding neighborhoods! You appear to be concerned with the timeline associated with this project. Suffice it to say, that if Edison had gone with the proposed and favored option of going through the State park (where they already have an easement with existing towers), the project would be finished by now. But in the interest of "safety first" (for who, the animals?) they chose to go with the option of putting these monster towers next to people's homes with all of the health and safety issues that implies!
The one thing I do agree with you on is that you need to follow the exemplary example of each member of the CPUC board who thoughtfully came to the city of Chino Hills; maybe after you see the situation as it really is, you will understand why the CPUC called a halt to the project going forward as originally approved. You will realize how disastrous a HEALTH and SAFETY issue this can turn into if allowed to go forward with the towers left in place so close to homes, schools, and families. I suggest you change into some clean shoes though; that Edison muck you're stepping in is going to taste mighty foul after you realize you've stuck your foot in your mouth big time! Now THAT is an issue of aesthetics!
Sincerely,
Cheryl Davies, Citizen of Chino Hills AND California ratepayer

WorkerB said...

Here is the new 2012 Bioninitiative Report regarding EMF's. Mr. Norris, your arguments are are in no way substantiated by your comments. These people in Chino Hills have been doing extensive research since 2007. Undergrounding is the safest and best option here without disrupting the whole project. The one main point with the undergrounding is taht the EMFs will radiate straight up, not coming into contact with any homes, plus they're underground. The 200 FT towards have no barriers, and will literally shower down 500KV of electricity on peoples homes. This is just one example. You have no clue what you're talking about after reading your comments. It sounds to me like a you're arguing a point for the sake of arguing.

http://www.bioinitiative.org/table-of-contents/

Dave Seltzer said...

For the love of God Mr. McDonald no one, including you, can possibly make any assertions about the devastation the monster towers have brought to our community until you physically get yourself out here and stand in the driveway of home that has a statue of liberty sized monster on top of it. Pictures don’t do it justice. 500,000 VOLTS 70 ft from sleeping children and elderly with pacemakers. Homes can’t be sold or refinanced. Many people are losing the majority of their net worth. The monster towers are so tall that when the “big one” here in CA hits they will topple on top of homes because they are taller than the easement is wide. This has NEVER been done is country. It's too much, too close! You call that green and environmentally friendly? You have obviously drank the big utility Koolaid.

Brett Benson said...

Apparently, Mr. Norris, you missed the several comments about the nearly 200 foot high towers being built in a 70 foot easement. If a tower were to fall over in any direction other than directly in line with the SCE easement, where would the excess part of the towers go - perhaps into the properties next to the easement, flattening homes and squashing children?

Misty Lamb said...

Mr. McDonald, All attempts to reroute have been exhausted and undergrounding is the only viable alternative on the table being discussed by the CPUC, The City of Chino Hills and SCE. Burying the lines along segment 8a of the TRTP will allow this project to move closer to completion and provide a safe infrastructure for those who live in the impacted areas. I would also like to encourage you to tour our impacted areas in Chino Hills. It is important to see for yourself how over 1,000 homes have been impacted by the placement of 200 foot towers in a row 150 feet wide often as close as 70 feet from homes. No photo will ever do justice to the horror of these towers looming over our neighborhoods. The future of more than 4,000 men, women and children who live in areas adjacent to these towers depend on SCE burying these 500kv lines.

Lindsay said...

I'm not certain why you have 'safer' in quotations, as though you question the veracity of widely accepted science, but since you did ask for a description of how it would be safer to underground the lines, here are two answers in brief:
1) above-ground massive towers present a fall risk to those residents who live nearest the towers, and anyone who happens to be on the (widely utilized) walking trails that run along the easement. California is obviously no stranger to earthquakes, and the structural integrity of the towers is uncertain under a very strong earthquake.
2) the health effects of high voltage power lines are documented here (reprinted from a Canadian source): http://www.hopeforthehills.org/Fact_24.pdf , and include increased risks of lung and mouth cancer, cardiovascular illness, and of particlar interest to you, surely, allergy and asthma problems.
But moreso, 17 countries are already undergrounding high voltage power lines (see: http://www.hopeforthehills.org/Fact_8.pdf ). the technology exists, it is proven to be effective, more efficient, and reliable in the long run. Why WOULDN'T we want them underground??

David Reed said...

Norris,
I'm not an engineer, so I can't comment on the effects of "fugitive electricity" other than to say that I would assume that the underground tombs would have insulation that would prevent or minimize the effects. I'm certainly not pleased about having this route so near my home whether underground or overhead, but I also understand that the infrastructure for future growth must be completed. My opinion, based on the research I have been able to read, is that undergrounding the wires is an overall safer plan. As far as this being an attempt to have this three mile section re-routed, I think everyone agrees that that ship has sailed which is why we are looking for other, safer alternatives.

LiLi said...

Hello Mr McDonald. I am speaking one more time. You have heard what we have to say. There is nothing GREEN about this project going through a heavily populated city. it is not the look as much as is the future health of our children. I do want to bring to your attention and all the other politicians in Washington or Sacramento (this is not in your backyard, is it?) that your position of forcing your ideas down our the throats has had an opposite effect, it has united the Citizens of Chino Hills like nothing else could. It has cost us the Tax payers millions of $$$ to fight this thing and the price is still growing. We are not happy campers that you have forced this on us and instead of using good tax payer money in good engineering and scientific research we are forced to spend it on lawyers (it's the Washington way, isn't it?). But never mind, there is always a future and our children are watching, they are the future voters if they survive to adulthood they will be having their say so about who moves into Washington DC.

Robbie said...

I,as a 16 year Chino Hills resident am not opposed to clean energy, as long as it is safe. This project has put 200 foot towering poles as close as 70 feet away from homes, with 500kv of electricity scheduled to run through the lines, posing safety and health issues, not to mention decreases in their property values. When the CPUC initially approved this project, they did so by looking at an architectural drawing. After visiting the site, they realized the devastating affect this had on residents who lived adjacent to easements (owned my SCE) that were never meant to house poles of this magnitude. Original home owners were not aware that this would ever occur. For you to state that this is an aesthetic issue is not factual! There are health and safety concerns as well as loss of property value concerns. Regarding your statement about cost increases to residents if the project goes underground, it is my understanding that the cost increase has been estimated to be less that $.50 per family state wide.

Art said...

Hello Norris, I'm sorry but you are totally wrong in this case. 500,000V power line carries extreme amount of power and should never be so close to people, homes, parks, church and schools. Use a little bit of common sense and you'll see what is unacceptable, even the commissioners at CPUC realized the problem after visiting the site at Chino Hills.

Kevin Smith (resident of Chino Hills) said...

Dear Mr. McDonald:
Perhaps you can enlighten us about the phenomenon of fugitive electricity since I can find no credible or authoritative description of this ominous risk.
Cynics too easily dismiss the thoughts and behaviors of residents as being simply emotional - as if somehow emotions are less important than reason. We honestly believe that our concerns are rational and well within proportion to the potential threats that accompany the existence of these towers.
People invest in their homes as their primary future security. Do you sincerely believe that the possibility of moderately higher energy costs overrides the necessity of protecting home value?
Please try harder to defend yourself and the center’s position on this matter, because up until now, you have only insulted us and embarrassed yourself; in addition, you have damaged the credibility of the organization that you represent.
In conclusion, I hope that you will have the good sense to publish a full retraction of the article.

Pat said...

The enormity of the potential health and safety issues arising from the installation of these poles and their 500kv is evidently something you have absolutely no knowledge of or concern for, and that doesn't even begin to address the issue of property devaluation in our community. You would be well advised to get better informed before you make unsubstantiated comments about the undergrounding of these lines. The people of Chino Hills have done their homework and know what is at stake. Aesthetics is the least of their worries!

Norris McDonald said...

Well I will say this: I surely did NOT expect to get this much feedback from one blog article about this issue. I appreciate the comments and look forward to more. We also appreciate that people have been respectful. Reasonable people can disagree without being disagreeable.

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