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US groups look to block $10bn SunZia grid link

RICHARD HEAP

January 24, 2024

US tribal and environmental groups have launched legal action to stop Pattern Energy building its $10bn SunZia transmission link between Arizona and New Mexico.

On 17th January, the Tohono O’odham Nation, San Carlos Apache Reservation, the Center for Biological Diversity and Archaeology Southwest filed a lawsuit in Tucson, Arizona, demanding that work on the project should stop due to the impact on a valley in the south of the US state.

They argued the US Interior Department and Bureau of Land Management have refused to recognise the cultural and environmental significance of the San Pedro Valley, which the SunZia transmission line would pass through. The government bodies gave Pattern permission to build the scheme in September 2023.

The SunZia transmission line is due to complete in 2026 and is intended to transmit power from the 3.5GW SunZia Wind project that Pattern is developing in New Mexico.

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