The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requires state and local agencies to identify the significant environmental impacts of their actions and to avoid or mitigate those impacts, if feasible. When SMUD is designated as a "lead agency," meaning it is in charge of those projects, we are required to file CEQA reports and obtain public comments on the projects when available.
Below is information on current or planned SMUD projects requiring CEQA reports.
SMUD is proposing to develop a new substation in Sacramento on a 10.3-acre site at 1220 North B Street in a developed area of downtown Sacramento. The project would consist of demolition of existing on-site structures and construction on new infrastructure to support up to five 40 MVA (megavolt amperes) 115/21kV transformers for a total of up to 200 MVA.
Substations are critical links in the electrical distribution system. Electricity travels through SMUD’s transmission system to substations where it can be converted to a lower voltage before safely being delivered to homes and businesses. The Station J Substation would directly serve the midtown and downtown areas, improving energy reliability and capacity.
SMUD is proposing the construction and operation of a new substation and decommissioning and removal of outdated equipment at the existing Elverta Substation. The proposed El Rio Substation would include new transformers and circuit breakers, a control building, paved access, fencing, lighting, stormwater drainage, stormwater retention basin, and utilities. North of the substation, two existing electrical towers carrying 230-kilovolt (kV) transmission lines would be replaced with two or three steel monopoles (also known as steel tubular poles) to tie the substation into the existing grid. Following the energization of the proposed El Rio Substation, the existing Elverta Substation would be decommissioned, and the outdated substation equipment dismantled and removed from the site. Project construction is anticipated to begin during the first quarter of 2025 and would be completed by late 2026, involving active construction for approximately 24 months, and 3 months to decommission the Elverta Substation.
SMUD is the lead agency responsible for complying with the provisions of California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). A draft initial study/mitigated negative declaration has been prepared by SMUD to evaluate potential environmental effects resulting from the El Rio Substation Construction Project (project). The document has been prepared in accordance with the CEQA (Public Resources Code [PRC] Section 21000 et seq.) and the State CEQA Guidelines (CCR Section 15000 et seq.).
- El Rio Substation Draft ISMND
- El Rio Substation Notice of Intent
- El Rio Substation Final ISMND
- El Rio Substation Final ISMND - Appendix A
The Final IS/MND will be formally presented at a SMUD Environmental Resources and Customer Service Committee (ERCS) meeting on November 14, 2023, at 6 PM for information and discussion. The SMUD Board of Directors will then consider adopting the Final IS/MND at the next Board meeting on November 16, 2023, at 6 PM. The public may comment at both meetings.
The meetings will be held at the SMUD Headquarters Auditorium, 6201 S Street, Sacramento, CA 95817 if conditions permit, otherwise the meetings will be held online. The Board will take no action at the ERCS meeting. View Board meetings for more information.
SMUD replaces aging electrical infrastructure as part of our maintenance and upgrade protocols. Accordingly, SMUD proposes to install approximately 0.6 miles of 12 kilovolt (kV) underground cable, approximately 2.12 miles of 69kV underground cable and up to 13 new utility vaults in the City of Rancho Cordova. The site is near the location of existing 12kV and 69kV underground cables that are approaching the end of their operational lives. Installation of the new cable, conduit and utility vaults would be done via open trenching.
SMUD plans to prepare an environmental impact report (EIR) for the project to satisfy the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) (Public Resources Code Section 21000 et seq.) and will serve as the lead agency for CEQA compliance.
The Draft EIR will provide information about the project and its potential environmental impacts so that agencies and interested parties can provide meaningful responses related to its scope and content, including mitigation measures and alternatives that should be considered.
SMUD proposes to install a full-scale soil vapor extraction (SVE) system to remediate volatile organic compound (VOC)-impacted soil gas as well as excavate and dispose soil contaminated with arsenic. In order to access the contamination, multiple buildings would require demolition. The “59th Street Demolition and Remediation Project” or “project” would include building demolition, installation and operation of the SVE system, and excavation and disposal of contaminated soil. All remediation activities would be reviewed and, prior to implementation, must be approved by the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) to ensure protection of human health and the environment. SMUD proposes to remediate the site to appropriate risk and exposure levels as determined by DTSC.
The Draft IS/MND analyzes the potential environmental effects associated with the proposed Project in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). In accordance with Section 15072 of the CEQA Guidelines, SMUD has prepared this Notice of Intent (NOI) to provide responsible agencies and other interested parties with notice of the availability of the Draft IS/MND and to solicit comments and concerns regarding environmental issues associated with the proposed Project. For more information, visit the 59th Street Demolition and Remediation Project webpage.
- View Final Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration
- View Final Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration Appendix A: Draft Changes
- View Notice of Intent
- View Draft Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration
- Appendix A: Air Quality
- Appendix B: Health Risk Assessment
- Appendix C: Cultural Resources
SMUD has prepared a Operations, Maintenance, and New Construction Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) to support issuance of requested Incidental Take Permits (ITPs) from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The HCP is a 30-year plan designed to avoid, minimize and mitigate impacts to HCP Covered Species that may be affected by SMUD’s various operation, maintenance and new construction activities. The HCP covers activities within SMUD’s service territory and in portions of Placer, Yolo, Amador and San Joaquin counties where SMUD’s facilities are present. The HCP Covered Species includes 7 state and federally endangered and threatened species — slender Orcutt grass, Sacramento Orcutt grass, vernal pool fairy shrimp, vernal pool tadpole shrimp, valley elderberry longhorn beetle, vernal pool tadpole shrimp, California tiger salamander and giant garter snake.
The Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) evaluates the potential impacts of issuance of the ITPs by USFWS and CDFW, implementation of those ITPs and approval and implementation of the proposed HCP (proposed Project). SMUD prepared the EIR to satisfy the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) (Public Resources Code [PRC] Section 21000 et seq.) and serves as the lead agency for CEQA compliance. The purpose of the EIR is to inform agency decision makers and the public regarding the anticipated significant environmental impacts of the proposed Project, potential measures to mitigate these significant impacts and reasonable alternatives that could reduce the significant environmental impacts of the proposed Project to a less-than-significant level. The EIR will be used by SMUD to comply with CEQA.
- View Final Environmental Impact Report
- View Notice of Availability
- View Draft Environmental Impact Report
- Appendix A: Notice of Preparation
- Appendix B: Habitat Conservation Plan
- Appendix C: General Plans and Policies for Environmental Resources
- Appendix D: Noise Calculations
- SMUD Nature Preserve Mitigation Bank Project Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration
SMUD is proposing the Country Acres Solar Project which would include installation, operation and maintenance of a photovoltaic (PV) solar power and battery storage renewable energy generation facility in southwestern Placer County. The project would be located on up to approximately 1,170 acres of land in southwestern Placer County just west of the City of Roseville, north of Baseline Road and east of South Brewer Road.
SMUD plans to prepare an environmental impact report (EIR) for the project to satisfy the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) (Public Resources Code [PRC] Section 21000 et seq.) and will serve as the lead agency for CEQA compliance. Throughout the CEQA process, SMUD will work closely with Placer County because the County will play a substantial role in the project as the issuer of project entitlements.
- Notice of Preparation
- Notice of Availability
- Final Environmental Impact Report
- Draft Environmental Impact Report
- Appendix A: Criteria Air Pollutant and Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Energy Use
- Appendix B: Biological Resources
- Appendix BR-2: Draft Aquatic Resources Delineation Report
- Appendix BR-3: Giant Garter Snake Assessment Report
- Appendix C: Historic Property Identification Report
- Appendix D: Water Supply Assessment and Preliminary Hydrology Report
- Appendix E: Noise Modelling
- Appendix F: Notice of Preparation and Scoping Summary Report
SMUD is proposing to remediate, including installing soil cover and drainage improvements, and long-term closure of SMUD’s approximately 12-acre North City Landfill, a former disposal site, and 1.5-acres of the approximately 3-acre City of Sacramento owned Lot 31 site. The project would be performed in compliance with the requirements established by CalRecycle and the California Code of Regulations Title 27 solid waste regulations, and regulated by Sacramento County Environmental Management Department as the Local Enforcement Agency in Sacramento County. The project would include concrete demolition, rough grading, import of approximately 50,000 cubic yards of soil, constructing a 2-foot thick soil cover and drainage improvements designed to collect runoff in an onsite drainage ditch and infiltration pond located on Lot 31. The project would reduce potential impacts on nearby sensitive receptors, public health and the environment by minimizing impacts to groundwater and improving storm water runoff quality from the site and reducing the chance for direct contact with solid waste and waste constituents. The project is anticipated to begin during the second quarter of 2022 and would be completed by late 2022, involving construction over a period of 6–9 months.
SMUD is the lead agency responsible for complying with the provisions of CEQA. A draft initial study/mitigated negative declaration has been prepared by SMUD to evaluate potential environmental effects resulting from the North City Landfill Closure Project (project). The document has been prepared in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) (Public Resources Code [PRC] Section 21000 et seq.) and the State CEQA Guidelines (CCR Section 15000 et seq.).
SMUD is proposing the Solano 4 Wind Project, which would involve decommissioning existing wind turbine generators (WTGs), constructing new, more technologically advanced WTGs, an associated electrical collection system and access roads, including minor upgrades to the existing Russell Substation and operation and maintenance of the new WTGs. SMUD would construct up to 22 new WTGs: up to 10 in Solano 4 East and up to 12 in Solano 4 West. Associated access roads and collection lines would be installed to support the new WTGs. Power generated by the new WTGs would be transmitted from Solano 4 East and West to the existing Russell Substation on Montezuma Hills Road via new, underground direct-buried electrical cable. The proposed project would have a net power production capacity of up to 91 MW delivered at the point of interconnection with the grid managed by the California Independent System Operator (CAISO). The power would be distributed from the substation via the adjacent Birds Landing Switching Station through the existing 230-kilovolt Vaca–Dixon–Contra Costa transmission line. SMUD prepared the EIR to satisfy the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) (Public Resources Code [PRC] Section 21000 et seq.) and serves as the lead agency for CEQA compliance.
- View the Final Environmental Impact Report
- View the Final EIR Appendix A – Technical Studies
- View the Final EIR Appendix B – FAA DNH Forms, DNH Extensions, Associated Correspondence
- View the Final EIR Appendix C – SMUD Response to SMW NOP Comments, and Westslope Consulting and Capitol Airspace Comment Letters
SMUD proposes to decommission the existing Station A substation and remove all electrical-substation-related equipment from within the historic Old Folsom Powerhouse Sacramento Station A building (historic Station A building) and the outdoor substation yard. Following the removal of all Station A equipment, SMUD would construct a new electrical substation (Station H) in place of the outdoor substation along the north side of H Street between 6th Street and 7th Street in downtown Sacramento (“Station H Substation Project” or “project”).
SMUD plans to prepare an environmental impact report (EIR) for the project to satisfy the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) (Public Resources Code [PRC] Section 21000 et seq.) and will serve as the lead agency for CEQA compliance. The purpose of publishing the Draft EIR is to provide sufficient information about the project and its potential environmental impacts to allow agencies and interested parties the opportunity to provide a meaningful response related to the scope and content of the Draft EIR, including mitigation measures that should be considered and alternatives that should be addressed.
SMUD proposes the Lambert Substation Project (Project) to construct and operate a new 12.5 megavolt-ampere (MVA) substation on an approximately 0.9-acre site at the northwest corner of the Franklin Blvd. and Lambert Rd. intersection in Sacramento County, California. The purpose is to replace an existing substation that is located approximately 750 feet north of the proposed new substation site. The existing substation would be decommissioned following the energization of the proposed new substation. The proposed new substation would include a new 12.5 MVA transformer and other associated substation equipment. The proposed Project would also include aboveground and underground lines to connect the substation to the existing 69kV and 12kV lines parallel to Franklin Blvd. and Lambert Rd.
The project involves the replacement of approximately 2 miles of existing underground 69kV cable within existing right-of-way and construction of up to 15 new manholes along the route to allow for improved access and maintenance of the power line. From the eastern terminus of the project alignment, the existing 69kV cable extends westward beneath I-5, as presented in Exhibit 1. It is unknown whether the cable beneath I-5 is encased in conduit or directly buried in the ground. If the cable is within conduit, it will be replaced by pulling through the conduit. If the existing cable is direct-buried, the project would include installing conduit and new cable beneath I-5, or overhead lines crossing I-5. After crossing I-5, the alignment runs northwest through an existing apartment complex parking lot to the northeast corner of the existing Nugget supermarket, along Florin Road just west of I-5.
The Draft IS/MND analyzes the potential environmental effects associated with the proposed Project in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). In accordance with Section 15072 of the CEQA Guidelines, SMUD has prepared this Notice of Intent (NOI) to provide responsible agencies and other interested parties with notice of the availability of the Draft IS/MND and to solicit comments and concerns regarding environmental issues associated with the proposed Project. For more information, visit the Pocket/Greenhaven Underground Cable Reliability Project webpage.
Station A Substation Rebuild and Relocation Project
SMUD is proposing to rebuild, reconfigure, and relocate portions of the Station A Substation at 6th and H Streets in the City of Sacramento. The proposed project includes installing new electrical equipment on a 1.3-acre site located directly to the north of the existing substation, relocating existing underground transmission and distribution lines and decommissioning portions of the equipment located at the existing substation.
SMUD has owned and operated the historic Station A since the 1940s and constructed the outdoor portion of the substation in the 1950s. The existing substation equipment is nearing the end of useful life and requires replacement, upgrade and additional space to maintain Station A as a reliable power source for downtown Sacramento. Additional space is required because it would not be feasible to rebuild the existing substation in place while maintaining electrical service in the downtown area currently provided by Station A.
The project also includes relocating a Regional Transit substation at the new site, constructing a new SMUD control building that will house electrical equipment replacing equipment currently located inside the existing Station A building, new gas insulated substation equipment and constructing two small open space areas on 6th Street and 7th Street.