Interior expands Western solar plan to include five additional states

The Biden administration expanded its proposed solar development plan for public lands in the West on Wednesday, a step officials said is crucial to delivering on President Joe Biden’s goal of reaching a 100% emissions-free power grid by 2035.

The new proposal is an update to the Bureau of Land Management’s 2012 Western Solar Plan. That Obama-era plan identified federal acres across six Western states — Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah — that had high development potential for utility-scale solar power.

Now, aided by $4.3 million in funds from the Inflation Reduction Act, BLM announced it has refined the existing areas and added land in five additional states: Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming.

Speaking to reporters Wednesday, BLM said it worked with the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory to estimate the
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