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Trump looks to water down California desert protection plan

The Trump administration is threatening to scrap a major Obama-era agreement that sought to protect millions of acres of the California desert by placing sensitive areas off-limits to major solar- and wind-energy installations.

The Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan covers more than 10.8 million acres and was designed to guide energy facilities to parcels where they are least likely to cause environmental damage. The administration's announcement that it will reconsider the plan touched off an immediate backlash in the West. The Trump administration's action could also open up sensitive desert areas to off-road vehicles, mining and grazing.


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