Rep. Mike Levin’s Bipartisan Legislation to Increase Renewable Energy on Public Lands Passes House Natural Resources Committee

November 20, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Levin’s (D-CA) bipartisan Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act of 2019 passed out of the House Natural Resources Committee. The legislation helps combat the climate crisis and reduce our dependence on fossil fuels by promoting development of wind, solar, and geothermal energy on public lands. The bill was introduced with Representatives Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), Jared Huffman (D-CA), Scott Tipton (R-CO), and others.

“We must take robust action to combat the climate crisis, and expanding renewable energy development on federal public lands is a commonsense, bipartisan step we can take to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels,” said Representative Levin. “This bill ensures that development is environmentally sound and focused on the highest quality renewable sources, minimizing impacts to wildlife, habitat and cultural resources. I’m proud that this bipartisan legislation passed through committee with a diverse coalition that includes 39 cosponsors – both Republicans and Democrats – as well as conservation groups, sportsmen, and renewable energy leaders.”

Background:

The Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act of 2019 helps combat the climate crisis and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by promoting the development of wind, solar, and geothermal energy on public lands. The bill includes measures to ensure a fair return for impacted states and communities and facilitates investment towards the highest quality renewable sources. In addition, PLREDA incentivizes development in these lower-conflict priority areas, while ensuring impacts to wildlife, habitat and cultural resources are avoided and minimized.

H.R. 3794 establishes a revenue sharing mechanism ensuring a fair return for relevant stakeholders. The revenue sharing mechanism will distribute certain revenues derived through this Act by returning 25% to the state where development occurs, 25% to the counties of origin, 25% is deposited into a fund for sportsmen and conservation purposes, including increasing access to outdoor recreation, 15% is directed for the purposes of more efficiently processing permit applications and reducing the backlog of renewable energy permits, and 10% is directed for deficit reduction.

Endorsing this legislation are The Wilderness Society, the Natural Resources Defense Council, Solar Energy Industries Association, Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, National Association of Counties, NextEra Energy, American Wind Energy Association, EDF Renewables, and First Solar.

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