As part of his We Can't Wait initiative, President Obama announced that seven "nationally and regionally significant solar and wind energy projects" will be expedited in Arizona, California, Nevada and Wyoming.
These projects - which include the largest wind farm in the US at 3000 MW and a large-scale solar project on tribal lands - add up to nearly 5000 megawatts of energy, enough to power about 1.5 million homes.
"These seven proposed solar and wind projects have great potential to grow our nation's energy independence, drive job creation, and power economies across the west," says Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar.
Because of a coordinated, focused review process, DOI says, it has approved 31 renewable energy projects in the past three years, which will power 2.3 million US homes.
Other proposed projects will be added to the list in the coming weeks.
The seven projects are:
- Chokecherry/Sierra Madre Wind Energy (Wyoming): 3000 MW of wind built by Power Company of WY on 230,000 acres - the largest proposed wind farm in North America.
- McCoy Solar Energy (California): 750 MW solar PV plant built by NextEra on 4,893 acres.
- Mohave County Wind Farm (Arizona): 425 MW built by BP Wind on 47,000 acres.
- Silver State South (Nevada): 350 MW built by First Solar on 13,043 acres. 50 MW is already completed - the first solar project on public lands to deliver power to the grid.
- Moapa Solar Energy Center (Nevada): 200 MW, half solar PV and half concentrating solar built by RES Americas. One of the first large-scale solar projects on tribal lands, it will be built on 2000 acres on the Moapa River Indian Reservation and on federal lands.
- Quartzsite Solar Energy (Arizona): 100 MW concentrating solar plant built by Solar Reserve on 1,675 acres.
- Desert Harvest Solar Energy Project (California): 150 MW solar PV plant built by enXco on 1,200 acres.