June 18, 2008
Some Refreshing Common Sense! BLM Removes Solar Roadblock
Well ask and you shall receive I guess...
Yesterday, we called on the federal Bureau of Land Management to stop being an Energy Delayer and lift a moratorium that locked up the vast reserves of solar energy located on federal lands. Today, the BLM announced that they would lift the planned twenty-two month moratorium on land it stewards in six southwest states rich in solar energy. The BLM had claimed that an extensive environmental impact review was necessary before solar development on federal lands could move forward and called for the moratorium on May 29th.
Today's refreshingly smart move from the federal government clears the way for over 130 solar energy development projects already submitted to the BLM to move forward and opens up the possibility of further development of this untapped and vast American energy resource.
"We heard the concerns expressed during the scoping period about waiting to consider new applications," BLM Director James Caswell said in a statement, "and we are taking action. By continuing to accept and process new applications for solar energy projects, we will aggressively help meet growing interest in renewable energy sources, while ensuring environmental protections."
I'd love to think my blogging had something to do with this, but there were plenty of voices that arrived at the same conclusion we at Breakthrough have. Among those calling for an end to the insane moratorium on solar development was Senate Majority Leader and solar-rich Nevada's senator, Harry Reid who I imagine might be slightly more influential than this blogger...
Either way, it's clear that as the price of oil continues to rise, buoying inflation and economic insecurity along with it, the time is now to tap our vast reserves of abundant renewable energy and develop the clean and cheap new American energy sources that will power the 21st Century.