Interior, FERC agree on offshore rules

The U.S. Interior Department and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission announced agreement today on rules that will govern permitting of renewable energy facilities in offshore waters.

The memorandum of understanding between the two agencies will eventually clear the way for some offshore wind projects that faced uncertainty until now.

“Our renewable energy is too important for bureaucratic turf battles to slow down our progress. I am proud that we have reached an agreement with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regarding our respective roles in approving offshore renewable energy projects. This agreement will help sweep aside red tape so that our country can capture the great power of wave, tidal, wind and solar power off our coasts,” Interior Secretary Salazar said.

In a statement, AWEA CEO Denise Bode said, “Timely development of U.S. offshore wind resources is important if we are to achieve the 20% vision by 2030. Today’s announcement by Interior Secretary Salazar and FERC Commissioner Wellinghoff is a welcome sign that some of the bureaucratic obstacles to offshore wind will soon be removed. It is also still another indication that the Obama Administration is ready to back up its commitment to renewable energy with concrete actions.”

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