BLM Allocates Funding to Study Renewables Impact on Public Lands

The large-scale study will assess how proposed solar farms and other renewable energy projects could impact animals, plants, and habitats.

1 minute read

January 1, 2024, 6:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Close-up of desert tortoise in Nevada desert.

The desert tortoise is one of the species that could be impacted by renewable energy infrastructure. | gchapel / Adobe Stock

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced $4.9 million in funding to support studies of the impacts of renewable energy projects on local ecosystems and wildlife.

As Greg Haas reports for KLAS, “The information collected could help the BLM decide the best places for projects as they come up for environmental review, and could help to fast-track some permits by doing wildlife studies ahead of time.”

Patrick Donnelly, Great Basin director at the Center for Biological Diversity, says that in addition to data collection, “We need strong new planning tools to give federal officials the authority to prioritize certain low conflict projects while denying projects that harm endangered species.”

Eight of the 10 largest proposed U.S. solar projects are in Nevada. “Those projects will eventually produce more than a quarter of the 25 gigawatts of electricity the Biden administration intends to permit on public lands by the end of 2025.”

Thursday, December 28, 2023 in KLAS

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