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Interior moves ahead with renewable energy projects in the West, Nevada

AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan, File
FILE - This May 20, 2012 file photo shows one of the major transmission lines that runs to the west of Albuquerque, N.M.

The Department of the Interior announced this week it is moving forward with the permitting process on several renewable energy projects in the West, including some in Nevada.

Initial steps, like environmental impact studies and reviews, are being conducted for the Greenlink North and Greenlink West transmission projects in Nevada.

The Greenlink West transmission project would run 450 miles through several Nevada counties between Las Vegas to Reno. The Greenlink North transmission project would run 232 miles through several northern counties. The two would provide eight gigawatts of renewable energy to the Western power grid.

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Other energy projects in the works include Nevada’s proposed 300 megawatt Bonanza Solar Project on BLM-managed land in Nye and Clark counties. Other projects are planned for New Mexico, Utah and Southern California.

Laura Daniel-Davis is the Department of the Interior’s deputy assistant secretary for land and mineral management. She described these projects as “once in a generation” investments that will affect the future of America’s infrastructure.

“The demand for clean energy has never been greater. The technological advances, increased interests, cost effectiveness and tremendous economic potential make these projects a promising path for diversifying our energy portfolio while at the same time combating climate change and investing directly in our communities,” said Daniel-Davis during an online news conference on Thursday.

Since 2021, the BLM has approved 35 projects ranging from solar to geothermal on more than 23,000 acres of BLM managed lands. When completed, these projects are expected to produce enough power for over 2.5 million homes.

Yvette Fernandez is the regional reporter for the Mountain West News Bureau. She joined Nevada Public Radio in September 2021.
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