June 28, 2012 Articles

NEPA and Renewable Energy Practices: Streamlining Sustainability

The DOI moves quickly to comply with Obama administration policy.

By Katherine Kennedy and Eric Andreas – June 28, 2012

The Obama administration continues to make development of renewable-energy projects an administrative priority. These projects, however, often trigger review under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), which is not only costly, but can add significant delays to any project caught in its web. In an attempt to streamline NEPA review for renewable energy projects, the Department of the Interior (DOI) has developed procedures to accelerate the process. Selected projects will receive expedited review to test whether the proposed procedures can credibly address the usual delays encountered during NEPA review. While the streamlining process is underway, the jury is still out as to whether it will work.

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