Local news- Press Release
Kern County Health Benefits California - Celebrate Kern County s 2022 Year 22 March 2022 ( news )
Kern County Health Benefits , state California ( By Press Release office)
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Kern County has led the way on energy development since the discovery of oil in the Kern River Field in 1899 , the first wind energy in California in 1981 and , the largest commercial solar project in the United States in Eastern Kern in 2011 . Today , we continue to define and accelerate energy development for the future of California .
We’re pleased to announce that Kern County has received notice from the U . S . Department of Energy that we , with our stakeholder partners , have been awarded a Communities LEAP ( Local Energy Action Program ) technical assistance grant for development of a Clean Energy and Carbon Management Business Park that will make Kern County a national Center of Excellence in new clean energy and carbon management industries and investment .
Watch the Board of Supervisors ' press conference here:
The proposed location of this 30 million square foot park on 4 , 000 acres combined with over 30 , 000 acres of solar for power on our challenged farmlands in the valley , impacted by State groundwater policies that will no longer be viable for agriculture . Situated next to our extensive oilfields that are processing permits for carbon capture and storage , the two can work together to create a new Clean Energy and Carbon Management Hub for all of California . With proximity to rail and interstate highways , the possibilities for connection to the ports of LA and Stockton will expand Kern’s economic future and create new pathways for jobs and training to lift all our communities .
This first step will provide the overview we need for setting the table for private sector investment in new and innovative carbon management technologies , from Direct Air Capture to Green Hydrogen and use of these technologies in Carbon Capture areas . This will also include a stakeholder process with our partners and communities in understanding what types of industries and jobs could be a reality within the next few years .
Then , we leave this to the private sector and area property owners to assemble the design , which could be more than one park , and finance the permitting submittal to our Planning and Natural Resources Department . The public process will include all voices and result in a public dialogue on appropriate conditions and protections for the full Board to consider . This is our pathway to build a new future for our communities of high - road jobs and investment from around the world in the County and our partner cities .
Renewable energy brought $60 billion of private and public investment to the county over the last 15 years and we can do it again .
We’d like to thank everyone who supported us in this process , including our project lead – Lorelei Oviatt , Director of Planning and Natural Resources .
Thank you to Governor Gavin Newsom and his administration , specifically Wade Crowfoot and Dee Dee Myers , for the support they provided .
Thank you to our partners , Dr . Lynnette Zelezny , President of CSUB , Dr . Sonya Christian and Camila Chavez , in partnership with the Kern Community College District , Richard Chapman with KEDC , the City of Bakersfield , Bakersfield Chamber , Shannon Eddy with our commercial solar industry , Octavio Escobedo , Chairman of the Tejon Indian Tribal government , the Kern County Farm Bureau , the Building and Trades Council , and IBEW .
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