Wind turbines spin at the
Wind turbines spin in Imperial County. Photo by Chris Stone

The House of Representatives on Friday passed bipartisan legislation authored by Rep. Mike Levin to promote development of renewable energy on public land.

Levin’s Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act promotes the development of wind, solar, and geothermal energy on public lands while minimizing its impact on wildlife and cultural sites.

The bill is part of the America COMPETES Act, which invests in American manufacturing of semiconductors and other critical technologies to counter China’s rising economic power.

“Expanding renewable energy development is critical not just in fighting climate change, but also enabling the United States to be a global leader in the clean energy industry,” said Levin. “We cannot afford to let China and other global competitors take the lead in manufacturing renewable energy technology that will define the 21st century.”

Levin, who was an environmental lawyer before being elected to Congress in the 49th District in north coastal San Diego and south Orange counties, said his bill includes a revenue-sharing mechanism for stakeholders and has the support of numerous environmental groups.

The House bill passed almost entirely on party lines, in a 222-210 vote, and must be reconciled with a Senate bill passed last June before becoming law.

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.