The World's #1 Renewable Energy Network for News, Information, and Companies.

Good for Wind: Administration Fast-tracks Transmission Projects

In a move that stands to enable more wind development sooner, this week Obama administration officials announced seven transmission priority projects that will be placed on a regulatory fast track, under the "Rapid Response Transmission Team" (RRTT) coordinated inter-agency approach to accelerate the permitting process for transmission projects.

The news marks another phase in a federal transmission siting and coordination effort stemming from a 2009 memorandum of understanding entered into by the White House’s Council on Environmental Quality, Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and Departments of Agriculture, Energy, Commerce, Defense, and the Interior. Five of the projects are in the Western U.S.; two are in the East. Six of the seven are interstate projects. In total, the projects will have a capacity of nearly 5,000 MW.

“AWEA applauds the Obama administration for taking steps to move from merely talking about transmission to actually getting projects permitted and under construction,” Tom Vinson, AWEA senior director of federal regulatory affairs, said in a statement. “An expanded transmission grid is critical not just for renewable energy, but also for our economic and national security by improving reliability and providing access to lower cost energy for consumers.”

The RRTT, made up of representatives from the same nine agencies that signed the 2009 MOU, will now identify the agencies that will be needed for each project in order to coordinate permitting and related planning processes.

“Building a smarter electric grid will create thousands of American jobs and accelerate the growth of domestic clean energy industries, translating into more energy choices and cost savings for American consumers, and a more secure energy future for our country,” said Nancy Sutley, chair of the White House-based Council on Environmental Quality.

The selected projects are:

  • Idaho Power’s proposed 500-kilovolt power line that will run 300 miles from Oregon to Idaho;
  • Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power’s 1,150 miles of high-voltage lines across Wyoming and Idaho;
  • Xcel Energy and partners’ 345-kilovolt CapX2020 line that will run from Minnesota to Wisconsin;
  • Portland General Electric’s proposed Cascade Crossing Transmission Project, a 210-mile, 500-kilovolt line in Oregon;
  • SunZia Transmission LLC’s two 500-kilovolt transmission lines in Arizona and New Mexico;
  • TransWest Express LLC’s 700-mile, 600-kilovolt transmission line in Wyoming, Utah and Nevada; and
  • PPL Electric Utilities and Public Service Electric and Gas Co.’s 145-mile, 500-kilovolt Susquehanna to Roseland Line in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Carl Levesque is the Communications Editor at AWEA. This article first appeared in the AWEA Windletter and was reprinted with permission from the American Wind Energy Association.

RELATED ARTICLES

Renewable energy jobs

Global Renewable Energy Employment Surges 18 Percent to 7.7 Million

Andrew Burger, Correspondent Ongoing growth in renewable energy investment and deployment is creating jobs worldwide — and lots of them. This job growth is helping governments address a fundamental economic problem plaguing developed and developing cou...
GE Digital Wind Farm

GE Introduces Digital Wind Farm that Could Boost Production 20 Percent, Re-ignites Alstom Buyout Talk

Meg Cichon, Associate Editor General Electric (GE) is pushing its wind farms to join the big data revolution with its new Digital Wind Farm, announced this week at Windpower 2015 in Orlando, Fla. amidst talk that its $15 billion offer to buy Alstom’s p...
Wind turbine

Bigger Wind Turbine Towers = Bigger US Development Opportunity

Meg Cichon, Associate Editor Wind energy already accounts for about 5 percent of U.S. electricity generation, which crowned the nation as the global leader in wind production late last year. There is now more than 65 gigawatts (GW) of capacit...
Wind turbines

Wind Energy Is Crucial in the Fight Against Climate Change, Says US Energy Secretary

Meg Cichon, Associate Editor

The opening general session at Windpower 2015 marked the first appearance by an U.S. energy secretary at the show, “which is surprising,” said current energy secretary Ernest Moniz, “but better late than never.”

Carl is Editor & Publications Manager at the American Wind Energy Association, where has worked since 2006. At AWEA he oversees AWEA's online and print publications including the Wind Energy Weekly, Windpower Update, and other products. He has wor...

CURRENT MAGAZINE ISSUE

Volume 18, Issue 3
1505REW_C11

STAY CONNECTED

To register for our free
e-Newsletters, subscribe today:

SOCIAL ACTIVITY

Tweet the Editors! @megcichon @jennrunyon

FEATURED PARTNERS



EVENTS

Doing Business in Brazil – in partnership with GWEC, the Global Win...

Brazil is one of the most promising markets for wind energy.  Ranke...

Renewables and Mining Summit and Exhibition

African mining leaders are seriously exploring new energy solutions to s...

JuiceBox Energy Certified Installer Class

JuiceBox Energy is reapidly building out its national certified installe...

COMPANY BLOGS

SunEdison Expands Residential Market Offerings with New PPA, Sales ...

SunEdison has largely focussed on the commercial and utility-scale solar...

Deadline for Inclusion in Solar Power World's Top Solar Contractors...

UPDATE: The official deadline for the Solar Power World T...

Are You Ready for a Natural Disaster?

Guest post by Jenna Clarke  Living in the Shenandoah Valley of Virg...

NEWSLETTERS

Renewable Energy: Subscribe Now

Solar Energy: Subscribe Now

Wind Energy: Subscribe Now

Geothermal Energy: Subscribe Now

Bioenergy: Subscribe Now  

 

FEATURED PARTNERS