It is no secret that solar power is great for the environment because it’s clean, green, and totally renewable. And this is exactly why President Biden is looking to expand the use of solar power in the U.S. and is pushing to open up public lands for solar projects. For example, two large-scale solar projects were recently approved in California. Hopefully, these projects are just the beginning, and the Biden Administration will be able to use more federal land for solar projects throughout the U.S. in the future.
The Expansion of Solar Energy on Federal Land
The Interior Department has approved two solar projects on federal land in Riverside County, east of Los Angeles. Combined, these two solar projects will be able to generate up to 465 megawatts of electricity, or enough to power about 132,000 homes. Not only that, but there are talks of a planned third 500-megawatt solar farm getting approval as well.
The Interior Department also issued a nomination of land for development within “solar energy zones” in Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico. If approved, these zones would cover about 140 square miles with solar farms.
The solar development zones were first proposed under the Obama Administration. In 2012, there were plans to bring utility-scale solar energy projects to public lands in Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah. Experts have identified almost 1,400 square miles of public land that could be leased to create more solar farms; if all of these identified lands were developed, the Bureau of Land Management says the land could support farms that create more than 100 gigawatts of solar power, which is enough to power 29 million homes!
“We fully intend to meet our clean energy goals,” Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said. She said the Trump administration stalled clean energy by shuttering renewable energy offices at the Bureau of Land Management, and by undermining long-term agreements, but the Biden Administration was working to get things back on track.
The Build Back Better Bill
There has been opposition to Biden’s climate agenda, which he has included in his Build Back Better Bill, from Virginia Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin, but the Biden Administration has indicated that this will not stop them from moving forward on climate action.
It is important to pass the Build Back Better bill, because without it, it will be difficult to get more solar projects underway. Without the provisions in the bill, tax incentives to build large-scale solar farms will drop to 10% of a developer’s total capital costs by 2024, instead of rising to 30%.
It seems like the future is bright for solar power, and if you are interested in getting on board, Go Solar Energy can assist you! We can help you figure out the best system for your budget, and how much you will save when making the switch to solar power. Our agents are highly trained and will compare all of the systems available for your home or business, and find the perfect plan for your budget and needs. To get free instant quotes, enter your zip code on our homepage, or to speak directly to one of our agents call (888) 290-3112.