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Energy and Environment
KUNR Public Radio is a proud partner in the Mountain West News Bureau, a partnership of public media stations that serve Nevada, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico and Wyoming. The mission is to tell stories about the people, places and issues of the Mountain West.

Haaland announces moves to boost clean energy production on public lands in the Southwest

A desert with several rows of solar panels stretching from the foreground to the background.
Tom Brewster Photography, Bureau of Land Management
/
Flickr Creative Commons

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland visited Las Vegas on Tuesday to announce new efforts to support the growing clean energy economy and green jobs in Nevada and the Southwest.

Climate change poses an existential threat to our environment, health and economic wellbeing, according to Haaland.

In Las Vegas, Haaland announced two new developments to foster renewable energy efforts. One is a new policy to reduce by 50% rent and fees charged for wind and solar projects on public lands for existing and new projects.

“It will incentivize industry to partner in responsible solar and wind development and help encourage and inspire to invest and compete in the clean energy economy,” she said.

A second development is the creation of five new renewable energy coordination offices to handle the increasing number of applications by wind, solar and geothermal developers through the Bureau of Land Management.

The coordination offices include a national office at BLM’s headquarters, state offices in Arizona, California and Nevada, as well as a regional office in Utah.

Both projects are within the Biden administration’s goal of a net-zero economy by 2050.

“The Bureau of Land Management continues to take bold steps to attract renewable energy investments on public lands in a way that is environmentally sound,” said BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning. “This will help support our clean energy economy by creating good-paying jobs, increasing our energy security, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

This story was produced by the Mountain West News Bureau, a collaboration between Wyoming Public Media, Nevada Public Radio, Boise State Public Radio in Idaho, KUNR in Nevada, the O'Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West in Montana, KUNC in Colorado, KUNM in New Mexico, with support from affiliate stations across the region. Funding for the Mountain West News Bureau is provided in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The photo included in this story is licensed under Flickr Creative Commons.

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