4. Noise Impacts on Veluzat Motion Picture Ranch
The closest sensitive noise receptor to the proposed project route is the Veluzat Motion Picture Ranch, which is immediately adjacent to the proposed transmission ROW in Haskell Canyon in unincorporated Los Angeles County. The operations of the Motion Picture Ranch would be impacted by the proposed project in several ways.
First, the operation of the proposed project would result in violations of local standards due to corona noise. The typical corona noise level that would be generated by the 500-kV line would be between 40 to 50 dBA at the edge of the transmission line ROW. The Los Angeles County Noise Ordinance presents a noise standard of 45 dBA for noise-sensitive areas such as the Motion Picture Ranch. Therefore, operational corona noise levels between 40 to 50 dBA at the Motion Picture Ranch would exceed Los Angeles County Ordinance Standards and would therefore result in a significant and unavoidable impact (Class I) to the operations of the Motion Picture Ranch.
Furthermore, the operations of the Motion Picture Ranch require very low ambient noise levels during outdoor filming. Ambient noise levels in the vicinity of the ranch are estimated to be approximately 40 dBA. Therefore, there is a potential for the operation of the proposed project to result in significant impacts to the operations of the Motion Picture Ranch (Class I).
Finally, temporary construction noise levels at the Motion Picture Ranch would be as high as 95 dBA. Such noise levels would make outdoor filming in the vicinity of the active construction areas impossible and would severely disrupt the operations of the Motion Picture Ranch, thereby resulting in a significant unavoidable impact (Class I).
As described above, Mitigation Measures N-1a, N-1b and N-1c would help to reduce violations of local noise standards; however, the impacts from mobile construction equipment would continue to violate local standards. Moreover, these mitigation measures and the rules and standards for construction noise in unincorporated Los Angeles County do not appear to address day-time noise levels at noise sensitive areas such as the Motion Picture Ranch.
However, a relocation of the route of the proposed project to Alternative 4 or Alternative 5 would eliminate all of these otherwise significant and unavoidable impacts on the Motion Picture Ranch.
F. Air Quality Impacts
Assessment of air quality impacts requires that emissions for the entire Antelope-Pardee Transmission Project be evaluated within each of the affected jurisdictions and/or air basins. As a result, the Final EIR/EIS presents its air quality assessment by jurisdiction rather than by project segment.
The Final EIR/EIS reports that essentially all air quality impacts associated with the proposed project would occur during project construction. The Final EIR/EIS, at pages C.2-1 through C.2 -43, describes expected dust and exhaust emissions during construction of the proposed project. Construction is tentatively scheduled for March 2008 to April 2009. Temporary construction emissions would result from on-site activities, such as surface clearing, excavation, foundation construction, steel construction, etc.; and from off-site activities such as construction related haul trips and construction worker commuting. Pollutant emissions would vary from day to day depending on the level of activity, the specific operations, and the prevailing weather.
Most of these identified impacts can be mitigated to a level of insignificance by the adoption and implementation of mitigation measures A-1a through A-1i. (See, pages A-1 to A-2 of Attachment A.)
However, even with all recommended mitigation measures, dust and exhaust emissions during construction would still exceed the regional emission thresholds of the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) and the Antelope Valley Air Quality Management District (AVAQMD). In addition, even with the implementation of all recommended mitigation measures during construction, proposed Alternative 1 would still expose sensitive receptors to substantial pollutant concentrations.
Accordingly, the Final EIR/EIS reports (at pages ES-32 and C.2-40) that, even with the recommended mitigation measures, the proposed project would cause significant and unavoidable (Class I) impacts in that construction emissions would exceed daily regional emission thresholds in the SCAQMD and AVAQMD, and that Alternative 1 would cause significant and unavoidable (Class I) impacts in that sensitive receptors would be exposed to substantial pollutant concentrations.