A dramatic transformation is under way in how energy resources on public lands are developed. Until recently, wind and solar languished under a single-minded focus on oil and gas. Renewable energy companies lost crucial momentum, and we will be living with the consequences of this lopsided management of energy development on public lands for decades to come.
The Obama administration’s efforts to restore balance have already resulted in key wind and solar projects moving forward in time for stimulus financing — an important first step. But we agree we must do more, and we must also do better.
The smart path to a sustainable energy future means moving from a scattershot approach of project-by-project permitting to clear policies that guide companies to the right places, with early public engagement and consistent environmental review.
Wind and solar development can be smarter, faster and cheaper for companies, conservationists and consumers.