The Biden administration said Wednesday it would cut in half the cost it charges businesses to build wind and solar projects on federal land, a measure to encourage renewable energy development.
Home Secretary Deb Haaland said in a statement, “Clean energy projects on public land play an important role in reducing our country’s greenhouse gas emissions and reducing costs for families.”
Wind and solar developers have long said federal land rental rates and project costs are too high to attract investors. Administration officials said the new policy would cut these costs by about 50 percent.
D-California Representative Mike Levine, who backed legislation to accelerate renewable energy development, praised the move. “As Americans continue to grapple with the exacerbated effects of the climate crisis and rising energy prices, it’s important to strengthen independence for clean energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lower energy costs,” he said in a statement.
Haaland made the announcement while visiting Las Vegas and hosting a roundtable on renewable energy with business groups. The Federal Land Administration has also announced that it will establish five new offices across the West to review proposed projects, enhancing its ability to handle the growing applications of wind, solar and geothermal developers.
The decision comes as the Biden administration seeks to increase the cost of permits to allow oil and gas companies to explore on federal lands and federal waters. Last month, the administration canceled three oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Alaska, and Republican lawmakers heard criticism that renewable energy policies were harmful to energy-producing countries.
Republican Senator John F. Kennedy said in the Senate Wednesday that “this is Biden’s energy policy: wind, solar, hopeful thinking.” Above all, it is unrealistic to be harmful to our country. It’s hurting our people in Louisiana.”
President Biden has promised to nearly halve the greenhouse gases the United States generates by 2030. A bill to achieve this has been frozen in the Houses of Parliament.
As a result, the administration is focusing on limited actionable measures to spur clean energy and reduce the use of oil, gas and coal. This use creates carbon dioxide and other gases that dangerously heat the planet.
For example, last year the administration gave approval to two large-scale solar projects on federal land in California that it said would generate about 1,000 megawatts, enough to power about 132,000 homes.
In a report submitted to Congress in April, the Ministry of Home Affairs said it would approve 48 wind, solar and geothermal projects by the end of the year, an estimated 31,827 megawatts of electricity generating capacity, enough to power nearly 9.5 million homes. . 2025 fiscal budget cycle.
Rate and rent cuts are a difficult time for the solar industry. A Department of Commerce investigation into whether a Chinese company circumvented US tariffs by moving solar panel components to four Southeast Asian countries has halted hundreds of new solar projects nationwide.