|Renewable Energy Sharing – “Good for the West” says the Western Governors Association|
|Written by Wild Nevada|
|Wednesday, 13 June 2012 13:08|
The Western Governors Association (WGA) recently addressed members of the United States Senate in a letter that supports legislation that could generate jobs and revenue through assessments tagged to renewable energy projects.
The opportunity to share revenues among state and local governments generated through this process is addressed within pending Senate Bill 1775, introduced by Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) and co-sponsored by Senator James Risch (R-ID), Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) of and Senators Harry Reid (D) and Dean Heller (R) of Nevada.
The bi-partisan support within the Senate and within the WGA clearly demonstrates the desire by western lawmakers to seek opportunities for western citizens to benefit from the surge in renewable energy development. Much of this development occurs in the west where public lands are prevalent.
The bill also establishes a mitigation bank that can utilize these dollars toward projects that benefit wildlife and habitat.Green Energy development is just one of many uses of our public lands.
This bill brings that type of development on a par with gas and oil leasing, geothermal permitting and mining – extractive industries that all contribute something in the form of revenues to public coffers. The bill has tremendous support from conservation organizations and sportsmen’s groups alike and together they have worked hard to demonstrate their support for passage.
The Nevada Wilderness Project is among these and will be making the trip to Washington, D.C., to speak with Nevada’s delegation to urge a Senate vote and a House companion bill.
The WGA’s letter, penned by chair Christine Gregoire (Wash.) and vice-chair Gary Herbert (Utah) supports green energy development but made it clear that there are potential impacts that renewable energy development could cause to fish and wildlife in the region, ultimately affecting outdoor recreation on public lands.
They said, “We believe a portion of the royalties from renewable energy development should be shared with state agencies to support land, wildlife and water conservation in affected areas. The region’s hunting heritage, outdoor recreation opportunities and tourism economies would benefit from this.”To view the bill, go to: www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/s1775 . We will keep you apprised of any further movement on this important legislation.