Invenergy Solar proposes to construct, operate, and decommission a utility-scale photovoltaic solar generation facility on approximately 560 acres of BLM-administered public land in Mineral County, Nevada. The Luning Solar Energy Project (LSEP) would be located approximately 3 miles north of the unincorporated town of Luning, on public lands administered by the BLM. The project would use ground-mounted PV panels with single axis trackers which rotate to follow the sun. Associated with the PV panels would be an electrical collection system to connect power inverters and transformers to a substation within the solar facility. A control house next to the project substation would house protective relays and communications infrastructure. A 120 kilovolt (kV) generation-tie transmission line would connect the project substation to the existing Table Mountain substation, owned by NV Energy. Two 40-acre mineral material sites, with access roads, are proposed as potential sources for aggregate and borrow material; the two sites would be designated as BLM community pits for future use by Mineral County, private citizens, and other users. Commercial operation of the solar facility is expected to last for 30 years.
The solar facility would be constructed on approximately 560 acres in section 15, S½SW¼; section 16, S½S½; section 21, N½N½; and section 22, N½N½, T. 8 N., R. 34 E., MDM. The SFO previously prepared the Luning Solar Energy Right-of-way Grant EA (DOI-BLM-NV-C010-2009-0017-EA) in July 2009 in response to a solar energy right-of-way (ROW) application from Luning Solar Energy LLC for a similar project in the same location. A FONSI was reached and the BLM issued a ROW grant (serial no.: N-85215) on July 15, 2010 to Luning Solar Energy LLC. The company constructed a small solar measurement station within the project area in early 2011, but did not develop a solar energy generating facility. The ROW was voluntarily relinquished in January, 2013 after the solar measurement station was removed. A new SF-299 ROW application was received from Invenergy Solar on July 31, 2013 which closely matched the Luning Solar Energy LLC ROW in terms of project area size and facilities.