While many predicted the midterm elections would play Ebenezer Scrooge to Cleantech's Christmas, it turns out that state and federal government agencies have swooped in to spread some Green cheer. With two major announcements today from the CPUC and Bureau of Land Management (with assists from the DOE and DOI), the number of renewable energy projects in California, Texas and the Southwest will likely get a huge boost.
The CPUC today approved California's proposed reverse action market feed-in tariff (RAM FIT) which promises to drive the development of 1GW of renewable energy in California alone.
In a separate announcement, the DOE and DOI today announced the conclusion of the Solar Programmatic Environmental Impact Study which has identified the federally owned land most suitable for utility-scale solar development in six southwestern states. The study will allow solar to receive accelerated approval for projects on publicly owned lands identified as ideal sites for solar development.
Other important developments this week include more details on California's long-awaited move to implement cap and trade on carbon-intensive businesses, and the extension of renewable energy grants in the House version of the Bush tax cut bill. While proponents of the grants were hoping for at least a three-year extension (one of Schwartz's clients likened a one-year extension to "pushing out the cliff"), it gives the industry 12 months to push for a longer extension. And though cap and trade at the federal level appears dead and meaningful energy reform policy is unlikely to pass the new House, government agencies appear to be flexing their muscles on behalf of the Cleantech industry.Tags: cap+and+trade, CPUC, doe, doi, feed+in+tariff, green+policy, green+public+relations, reverse+auction, solar PEIS
Posted by Jason Morris on December 16, 2010 at 5:15 PM