S.279 - Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act of 2013113th Congress (2013-2014)
Summary: S.279 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)
Introduced in Senate (02/11/2013)
Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act of 2013 - Amends the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to require amounts received through FY2020 (currently, through FY2010) from leases under the Geothermal Steam Act of 1970 to be available to the Secretary of the Interior for implementing the Energy Policy Act of 2005, as well as the Geothermal Steam Act of 1970.
Requires the Secretary of Agriculture (USDA) to: (1) prepare and publish a notice of intent to prepare a programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) to analyze the potential impacts of a program to develop solar and wind energy on National Forest System land and any necessary amendments to land use plans for such land, and (2) amend such plans to provide for the development of renewable energy on completion of the programmatic EIS.
Requires the Secretary of Defense (DOD), for states that have not completed such an analysis, to submit a report that: (1) identifies locations on land withdrawn from the public domain and reserved for military purposes that could be developed for renewable energy production, and (2) describes the administration of public land withdrawn for military purposes for the development of commercial-scale renewable energy projects.
Requires the Secretary of the Interior to establish a wind and solar leasing pilot program on public land administered by the Secretary. Requires the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture to: (1) make a joint determination on whether to establish such program within two years on all covered land, (2) establish such program unless they determine that the program is not in the public interest and does not provide an effective means of developing such energy, and (3) require as a condition for any authorization for the development of such energy on such land the payment of a royalty.
Defines "covered land" as: (1) public land administered by the Secretary or National Forest System land administered by the Secretary of Agriculture; and (2) land not excluded from the development of solar or wind energy under a land use plan established under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, the National Forest Management Act of 1976, or other law.
Establishes in the Treasury the Renewable Energy Resource Conservation Fund to be administered by the Secretary of the Interior in regions impacted by the development of wind or solar energy for addressing and offsetting the impacts of such development on federal land, securing recreational access to federal land to provide enhanced public access to existing federal land that is inaccessible or significantly restricted, and carrying out activities authorized under the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965.
Requires the Secretaries of Agriculture and the Interior to determine the feasibility of carrying out a conservation banking program.
Prohibits wind or solar generation projects with a capacity of 20 megawatts or more that are issued a lease, right-of-way, permit, or other authorization from being subject to the rental fee exemption for rights-of-way under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act.