26 July 2012 How the West Was Won: Interior Announces New Solar Energy Plan Posted by: William Lutz | 2 comments | Share: Building solar “smart from the start” just makes sense The U.S. Department of the Interior finalized new plans for solar energy development on public lands in the west on Tuesday after a prolonged joint effort among stakeholders and government officials to create environmentally responsible and economically beneficial renewable energy development guidelines.The large-scale plan, known as the Solar Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement or SPEIS, will now set the stage for the next generation of renewable energy development in the West. And it will do so in a way that protects wildlife and habitat. Proponents of solar energy have long sought guidelines for responsible development that would protect the interests of vulnerable wildlife/wildlands while also providing economic incentives for continued growth. With the announcement of this plan, the Interior has clearly emphasized that kind of “smart from the start” mindset, making it clear that protecting the environment will need to be a strong factor in future endeavors involving solar energy in the western U.S. Because the release of the statement is so fresh, analysis will soon begin on the part of numerous organizations involved, including Defenders, to assess its various components. Keeping a close eye on this ongoing project is a necessary element to ensure we continue to develop renewable energy “smart from the start.” For now, however, the Interior’s announced plans show that long-term changes are on the way that could impact the environmental footprint of solar energy development for the better. To read more about the solar plan, click on http://www.defenders.org/press-release/interior-unveils-first-ever-national-solar-energy-plan-public-lands 2 Responses to “How the West Was Won: Interior Announces New Solar Energy Plan” Hammad September 9th, 2012 The west hasnt won yet There is still a long way to go with the affordability, regulations and popularization of solar energy in homes across America. But it is a step in the right direction! Sunny December 4th, 2013 intresting information, hmm the new solar plan Post Your Comment Click here to cancel reply. Name (required) Mail (required) (will not be published) You May also be interested in It’s Time to Act for Right Whales Years after they agreed to expand critical habitat for endangered North Atlantic right whales, we’re still waiting on NMFS to follow through. So we took to the courts to get this much-needed protection in place. How Should We Honor Earth Day? America has many worldwide firsts in conservation: we were the first nation to establish a national park, the first to create a national wildlife refuge, the first to approve a law protecting endangered species and the first to create a national day dedicated to conservation, Earth Day. But today, we are experiencing another period of crisis in America’s commitment to conservation. When did conservation become a polarizing political issue, when it has been, for the past century, a defining characteristic of American values and the American spirit? Ecological Insults and Injuries Revealed Four Years after Deepwater Horizon Four years after the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig spilled millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, we’re beginning to see the full scope of how this ecological disaster is impacting our wildlife on land, air and sea.