Renewable advocacy groups ask Congress for transmission permitting reforms

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With reform approval debates in Congress this week and debt ceiling negotiations continuing, major domestic renewable energy groups: letter Addressed to House and Senate leaders calling for enactment of a bipartisan Electricity Permit Act based on innovative clean energy policies contained in the Control Inflation Act.

“Studies show that to maximize the carbon footprint reduction benefits of this historic law, we will need to double the pace of transmission deployments to date,” the groups said. explained in the letter. “These reforms will help the United States make the economic competitiveness, ensure grid reliability in the face of increasingly frequent severe weather, and achieve the clean energy transition needed to address the climate crisis. It is essential to the realization of the 21st century power grid needed to

The American Renewable Energy Council (ACORE), Advanced Energy United (United), and the Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA) recommend reforms to federal power laws that:

  • Strengthen Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) siting authority for critical interstate transmission lines.
  • Codify fair cost allocation language that will allow transmission developers to recover interregional circuit costs from beneficiaries and enable related petitions to the FERC.
  • Improve cross-regional planning processes to better reflect the multiple benefits of interconnected grids.and
  • Instructs FERC to implement interregional transmission capacity requirements to enable adjacent transmission planning regions to transmit when the grid is under load.

Renewable energy groups are also asking Congress to consider policies to modernize the review of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) while maintaining bedrock environmental protection. These include reforms such as:

  • Prioritize meaningful stakeholder consultations in advance, especially for underserved communities.
  • Provide reasonable timelines for environmental impact reports and environmental assessments
  • Require designation of a single lead agency responsible for environmental documentation
  • establish a reasonable statute of limitations for judicial review
  • Provide sufficient resources to the permitting agency

The negotiating framework addressing the environmental review must also include permission to install and reform the necessary transmission sites, the groups added, noting that they would oppose any effort to separate these two key themes. .

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