Friday, June 27, 2008

Outrage by the Bureau of Land Management.

Citing Need for Assessments, U.S. Freezes Solar Energy Projects (1)

Faced with a surge in the number of proposed solar power plants, the federal government has placed a moratorium on new solar projects on public land until it studies their environmental impact, which is expected to take about two years.


Ok, so, it's a given that Environmental assessments MUST take place in determining the uses of Public Land, but a MORATORIUM on Solar Installations on all Public Land is so irrational, that it can only be an intentional act of disruption, or suppression.

Per (1), the current Applications amount to One Million Acres of land. However, BLM oversees 260 Million Acres in total, of which 44,479,478 acres are under lease, and 11,629,625 acres are in production4. According to the Telegraph, BLM makes the claim that they will continue to process the existing Applications, which amount to a potential 70GW of production, or enough energy to power 20 million homes5.

Even Bush's own Executive Order 132123 should be read to require that these projects be expedited.

There is no valid rationale for a two year moratorium on Solar Development on Public Land; certainly not when it is already acknowledged that Energy Development is a fair use of that public land.

It's an outrage.

2. More Info on BLM and Energy Leases - Washington Post.

3. Executive Order 13212.

4. Analysis of BLM’s Oil and Gas Development 2001-2007.

5. US halts solar energy projects over environment fears - Telegraph.

Thanks to McOgon of Google, and peak_oil_101 of Yahoo for Links.

EDIT: Here's a CNN Special Report on this Story.

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