On Wednesday, U.S. Senator Jon Tester held a public meeting in Missoula, Montana, to promote The Public Lands Renewable Energy Development Act (PLREDA), a bill that encourages responsible renewable energy development on public lands.
This bill is a winner for a number of reasons:
1. It encourages “smart from the start” planning that would avoid issues like wildlife conflicts;
2. It prioritizes local residents impacted by the development by investing project profits into their communities;
3. It makes it easier for wind and solar energy developers to move forward with their projects on appropriate public lands;
4. And, most importantly, it creates a fund to ensure that wildlife habitat and other important areas can be protected to offset impacts associated with energy development.
The legislation, which is also sponsored by a number of Republicans and backed by Montana Senator John Walsh and Representative Steve Daines, would help our economy and our environment by tapping into the West’s wind and solar resources on public lands, which are some of the best in the world.
Tester commented during Wednesday’s discussion that “we must continue to develop our renewables because it makes the country more energy secure and it's just the right thing to do."
Thank you, Senator Tester, for your work on PLREDA. Let’s hope Washington follows your lead.