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  • Saturday, April 30, 2011


    BLM Facilitates Renewable Energy Development on Public Lands through Rules
    April 25, 2011 (U.S. Dept of the Interior/Bureau of Land Management)

    "In support of the [Obama] Administration’s work to develop environmentally-responsible renewable energy on public lands, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) [has] moved…to facilitate right-of-way (ROW) applications for lands with wind and solar energy development potential…

    "…Under existing regulations, lands included in a renewable energy ROW application or within an area identified by the BLM for such ROWs differ from lands proposed for exchange or sale, which can be closed to the filing of mining claims. Lands included in a proposed ROW, however, remain open to appropriations such as the location and entry of mining claims while the BLM is considering the application."

    click to enlarge

    "Since 2006, the BLM has processed 24 solar and wind energy development ROW applications. In two proposed ROWs, mining claims were located after the applications were submitted but before the ROWs could be authorized. Over the past two years, 437 new mining claims were located within wind energy ROW application areas in Arizona, California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming, while 216 new mining claims were located within solar energy ROW application areas."

    There is no apparent need for conflict between mining and New Energy, so why is there conflict? (click to enlarge)

    "The BLM published two rules…to help resolve such conflicts. The two rules grant the BLM authority to temporarily remove lands included in a renewable energy ROW application and lands offered for wind or solar energy lease from land appropriations like mining claims. Through temporary segregation of lands covered by a currently pending or future wind or solar ROW application, the BLM can ensure no new resource conflicts will arise with respect to mining claims.

    "…Such segregations would only be authorized as needed and would not necessarily cover all lands where renewable energy ROW applications have been filed…The rules would also provide for termination of the segregation…The segregation would be effective for two years and can be extended for an additional two years if the appropriate BLM State Director determines that an extension is necessary…The proposed rule will be completed within two years."


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