The US government has announced plans to accelerate the approval of seven solar and wind projects in four western states as part of President Obama’s aim to promote wider use of renewable energy on federal land. Bloomberg advised that the US Office of Management and Budget will oversee “a government-wide effort to make the permitting and review process for infrastructure projects more efficient and effective.”
Projects in Arizona, California, Nevada and Wyoming are expected to benefit from the action with almost 5,000MW of facilities being spurred forward by the decision. The projects are estimated to be able to produce enough power for nearly 1.5 million homes. “These seven proposed solar and wind projects have great potential to grow our nation’s energy independence, drive job creation and power economies across the west,” Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in the statement.
The 425MW Mohave Wind Energy project and the 100MW Quartzsite Solar Energy farm in Arizona, the 150MW Desert Harvest and NextEra Energy’s 750MW McCoy solar projects in California, the 200MW Moapa and First Solar’s 350MW Silver State South projects in Nevada and the 3,000MW Chokecherry/Sierra Madre wind farm in Wyoming will all be fast-tracked under this new policy. According to the official statement, the Quartzsite, Desert Harvest and McCoy projects are expected to receive final permitting and reviews by December.