The Arizona Corporation Commission voted 3-2 Wednesday to approve the 515-mile-long SunZia Southwest Transmission Project. The certificate is one of the last major permits the project needs.
The SunZia project aims to tap into wind resources in New Mexico as well as solar and geothermal potential in New Mexico and Arizona. The line will export electricity to markets in the West.
Commissioner Doug Little, who voted against authorizing the construction, said it was a mistake to build the line through southeastern Arizona's environmentally sensitive San Pedro River valley.
Other commissioners said the project was needed to help upgrade the electric grid.
The SunZia line will cross Luna County, and plans show that a mid-point substation will be built about 10 miles north of Deming, just off the Hatch Highway.