Tester’s bipartisan Public Lands Renewable Energy Development Act hits the Senate floor

Legislation will streamline wind, solar and geothermal projects on public lands

(U.S. Senate)-Senator Jon Tester joined with colleagues today to file his bipartisan Public Lands Renewable Energy Development Act as an amendment to comprehensive energy legislation that is currently being debated by the entire Senate.

Tester’s Public Lands Renewable Energy Development Act streamlines the permitting process for wind, solar and geothermal development on public lands where development makes the most sense. The bill also sets aside a portion of funds generated by energy development to benefit various conservation efforts and helps mitigate the impact that construction could have on land, water, and wildlife. Furthermore, it would set aside revenues for states and counties that are home to these energy projects.

“Montana is home to diverse public lands that offer tremendous clean energy potential,” Tester said. “This bipartisan bill strikes a balance that will create jobs, preserve our outdoor way of life, and provide a boost to rural Montana communities.”

Currently, the Senate is debating the Energy Policy Modernization Act, a robust energy bill that addresses natural resource development, energy efficiency, electric infrastructure, and conservation. With hundreds of amendments filed already, Tester is withholding his support for the bill until he is assured that the end result is a bill that strengthens Montana’s all-of-the-above energy economy.