SunZia Southwest Transmission Line (Arizona, New Mexico)

SunZia Map

A map of the proposed SunZia project.

The SunZia Project consists of two extra-high voltage electric transmission lines and substations that will transport primarily renewable energy from Arizona and New Mexico to customers and markets across the southwestern United States. 

The length of the proposed route is approximately 460 miles.  For SunZia, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires alternative routes be evaluated in an environmental impact statement (EIS). The BLM is currently working on the Draft EIS. The DEIS is tentatively scheduled to be released in mid-October 2011. 

Audubon has expressed concern that the proposed route for the SunZia transmission line will likely have negative effects on the migratory, wintering, and breeding bird populations that use the Socorro Valley. The Socorro Valley has been identified as the most critical landscape in the annual cycle of the Rocky Mountain Population of Sandhill Cranes (approx 20,000 annually in the population) due to the density of wintering birds in one location, the limited availability of foods (natural and wintering), and the small size of this wintering area.

For more information on this project and how you or your chapter can help make sure our energy future is wildlife-friend, contact your local Audubon state offices - Audubon Arizonaand Audubon New Mexico