Video


Onshore Renewable Energy Workshop - Part 2


February 9, 2011


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Transcript

GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE, AND WELCOME TO THE SECRETARY'S RENEWABLE ENERGY CONFERENCE. I WANT TO THANK ALL OF YOU FOR TAKING THE TIME AND THE TROUBLE in TRAVELING TO WASHINGTON FOR THIS CONFERENCE. IT TRULY HAS BEEN A PRIVILEGE TO WORK WITH ALL OF YOU, I THINK, OVER THE LAST TWO YEARS ON THIS HISTORIC AGENDA. I JUST WANT TO THANK AGAIN SECRETARIES SALAZAR, CHU, AND VILSACK FOR TAKING TIME OUT OF THEIR BUSY SCHEDULES TO START THE CONFERENCE OFF. I THINK WE, IíM EXCITED ABOUT EVERYTHING WE HAVE TO TALK ABOUT TODAY. WE HAVE STRUCTURED THIS CONFERENCE, AND I THINK YOU CAN SEE THAT FROM THE AGENDA, IN ORDER TO PROVIDE AN OPPORTUNITY TO HEAR FROM YOU, OUR STAKEHOLDERS AND PARTNERS IN THIS EFFORT TO STAND UP A CLEAN ENERGY ECONOMY. THIS IS NOT GOING TO BE A BUNCH OF TALKING HEADS ALL DAY. I WANT TO REITERATE THE IMPORTANCE OF YOUR COMMITMENT TO THE AGENDA AND WHAT WE ARE A TRYING TO ACCOMPLISH. WE HAVE TWO PLENARY SESSIONS. I WILL INTRODUCE DAVID IN JUST A MINUTE, WHO WILL MODERATE THE FIRST PANEL. THE FIRST PLENARY IS REALLY DESIGNED TO GIVE THE DEPARTMENT AND THE LEADERSHIP HERE AN OPPORTUNITY TO EXPLICATE SOME OF THE POLICIES AND INITIATIVES THAT WERE ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY. YOU HAVE THOSE. A PRESS RELEASE WAS PUT OUT WITH LINKS TO THOSE DOCUMENTS YESTERDAY IF YOU DONíT HAVE THEM. THE PANEL YOU WILL HEAR FROM 1ST IS A DEPARTMENT-LEAD PANEL, AND THE BREAKOUT SESSIONS AT LUNCH ARE STRUCTURED IN SUCH A WAY TO ENCOURAGE DIALOGUE, FEEDBACK, QUESTIONS. WE WANT TO HAVE A ROBUST GIVE- AND-TAKE HERE TODAY. THE SECOND PANEL IS DESIGNED AROUND SOME OF THE SUCCESSES AND PARTNERS WE HAVE WORKED WITH MOST CLOSELY IN CALIFORNIA AND NEVADA. IT IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR THE SECRETARY AND ALL OF US TO TALK ABOUT WHAT WORKED WELL IN CALIFORNIA, WHAT SOME OF THE LESSONS LEARNED ARE AND WERE, AND THE SECRETARY'S GOAL IS TO PARTNER WITH OTHER STATES TO SEIZE OTHER OPPORTUNITIES IN OTHER WESTERN STATES IN ADDITION TO CALIFORNIA TO EXPAND THE DEPARTMENT'S EFFORT THROUGHOUT THE WEST. SO THE BREAKOUT SESSION DURING THE MORNING SESSION TOMORROW ARE DESIGNED TO FOCUS AND DRILL DOWN A LITTLE MORE DEEPLY ON SOME OF THE QUESTIONS THAT WILL BE ADDRESSED IN THAT SECOND PANEL. PLEASE IF YOU HAVE NOT ALREADY, PLEASE PICK UP YOUR REGISTRATION PACKET. IT HAS YOUR ROOM ASSIGNMENTS FOR YOUR PANEL CHOICES. WE HAD TERRIFIC INTEREST OBVIOUSLY IN THE CONFERENCE AND WE HAVE CREATED ADDITIONAL BREAKOUT SESSIONS WITH SUBJECT MATTER EXPERTS TO LEAD THOSE DISCUSSIONS. I WANT TO THANK KATIE MCCORMICK AND THE ENERGY FOUNDATION FOR PROVIDING US WITH YOUR WITH YOUR LUNCHES TODAY. THANK YOU, KATIE. I WANT TO THANK TOM STRICKLAND AND DAVID HAYES, IN PARTICULAR, WHO HAVE BEEN REAL LEADERS AND PARTNERS IN THE EFFORT AT THIS DEPARTMENT. IT HAS TRULY BEEN A PRIVILEGE TO WORK WITH ALL OF OUR TEAM HERE. TOM, AS YOU KNOW, HAS DECIDED TO MOVE ONTO OTHER THINGS AND WE WILL MISS HIS LEADERSHIP, BUT I WANT TO THANK HIM IN PARTICULAR. YOUíLL HEAR FROM HIM IN A KEYNOTE THIS AFTERNOON, SO DO NOT LEAVE AFTER LUNCH. TOM HAS REALLY HELPED GRAPPLE WITH THE INTERNAL TENSION THAT WE FACE EVERY DAY HERE AT THE DEPARTMENT. WE HAVE MULTIPLE STATUTORY AND STEWARDSHIP OBLIGATIONS THAT IN SOME CASES ARE CONFLICTING. THIS RENEWABLE ENERGY AGENDA IS PERHAPS THE BEST EXAMPLE OF OUR EFFORT TO STRUGGLE WITH THOSE COMPETING OBLIGATIONS. WITH THAT, I AM GOING TO INTRODUCE DAVID HAYES, WHO WILL INTRODUCE HIS PANELISTS. DAVID THANK YOU AS WELL FOR YOUR LEADERSHIP ON THIS EFFORT. IN PARTICULAR DAVID WAS WITH THE SECRETARY MONDAY ON THE OFFSHORE WIND ANNOUNCEMENT AND HAS BEEN A REAL PARTNER AND LEADER ON THE ONSHORE AS WELL. DAVID IS GOING TO LEAD THE FIRST PANEL, AND WITH THAT I WILL TURN IT OVER TO YOU. [APPLAUSE]  

FIRST OF ALL, LET'S GIVE A ROUND OF APPLAUSE FOR STEVE BLACK, WHO HAS BEEN A HUGE LEADER IN THIS EFFORT. [APPLAUSE] MANY OF YOU HAVE KNOWN STEVE AND WORK CLOSELY WITH HIM. I WILL CONTINUE THE COMMERCIAL FOR A MINUTE HERE. STEVE HAS BEEN A FORCE OF NATURE HERE IN A DEPARTMENT ON BEHALF OF TOM AND I AND THE SECRETARY AND ALL THE LEADERSHIP OF THE DEPARTMENT TO HELP MOVE FORWARD THE RENEWABLE ENERGY EFFORT HERE AT THE DEPARTMENT, AND WE THANK HIM FOR THAT. I'M GOING TO JUST QUICKLY INTRODUCE THE FOLKS WHO ARE ON THE PANEL. STEVE SET IT UP NICELY. WHAT WE ARE INTENDING TO DO HERE IS GIVE YOU IN A PLENARY WAY AN OVERVIEW OF THE MAJOR ASPECTS OF OUR PROGRAM, AND THEN IN PARTICULAR DRILL DOWN A LITTLE BIT ON THE ANNOUNCEMENTS THAT CAME OUT YESTERDAY. IN PARTICULAR THE BLM ANNOUNCEMENTS WITH REGARD TO NEPA AND THE APPROACH WE WILL BE TAKING WITH NEPA AS WELL AS SOME OF THE SCREENING AND THE OTHER REQUIREMENTS WE ARE GOING TO BE EXPECTING OF APPLICANTS. THEN VERY IMPORTANTLY ALSO, THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE APPROACH, BOTH ON PRIVATE LANDS IN ORDER TO HELP PROJECTS MOVE ALONG ON PRIVATE LANDS, AND ALSO THE BIRD TURBINE INTERACTION ISSUES THAT HAVE BEEN BEDEVILING A NUMBER OF PROJECTS. WE HAD A COUPLE OF VERY IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS YESTERDAY THAT WE WILL HEAR MORE FROM. WE ARE HOPING IS OUR PANELISTS WILL BE SHORT, GIVE YOU THE BASIC NUGGETS OF INFORMATION, AND WILL HAVE A CHANCE FOR QUESTIONS. BUT THEN THIS IS REALLY A SET UP FOR THE BREAKOUTS AT LUNCHTIME WHEN EACH OF THESE SUBJECTS AND MORE, INCLUDING OUR WORK WITH INDIAN COUNTRY ON RENEWABLE ENERGY, WILL BE DISCUSSED. SO I WILL ALSO WARN YOU AT THE BEGINNING HERE THAT JUST BEFORE LUNCH I AM GOING TO TALK FOR JUST A COUPLE OF MINUTES ABOUT THE OFFSHORE INITIATIVE THAT WE HAVE HERE AT THE DEPARTMENT THAT THE SECRETARY MENTIONED. THIS CONFERENCE IS FOCUSED ON ONSHORE, BUT I DO NOT WANT YOU TO LEAVE WITHOUT HAVING A LITTLE BIT MORE CONTEXT OF WHAT WE'RE DOING OFFSHORE BECAUSE IT IS EQUALLY EXCITING TO WHAT WEíRE DOING ON ONSHORE. PROBABLY THE SUBJECT OF THE NEXT CONFERENCE, AN OPPORTUNITY TO SEE OUR BEAUTIFUL AUDITORIUM AND SPEND TIME WITH THE CHARMING FOLKS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR. SO LET ME INTRODUCE ALL OF OUR FOLKS HERE QUICKLY AND APOLOGETICALLY NOT GIVE THEM ALL THE KUDOS THEY DESERVE. AND THEN WE ARE GOING TO HAVE EVERYONE SPEAK AT THE TABLE HERE, GO DOWN THE LINE AND GIVE THE POINTS THAT THEY WANT TO MAKE. BOB ABBEY OF COURSE IS THE DIRECTOR OF THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT AND HAS BEEN A HUGE FORCE IN HELPING MAKE THIS HAPPEN ON THE 250 MILLION ACRES THAT HE OVERSEES. HE WILL BE GIVING MORE OF AN OVERVIEW THAT BUILDS ON SOME OF THE COMMENTS THAT THE SECRETARY MADE AT THE OUTSET, GIVE YOU THE WHOLE PICTURE AS FAR AS BLM IS CONCERNED. TED BOLING IS NEXT. HEíS DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR LAND AND MINERALS. SOME OF YOU MAY REMEMBER, I DO, WE WORKED TOGETHER IN THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION WHEN I WAS HERE AT INTERIOR. HE WANDERED IN THE WOODS FOR A WHILE OVER AT CEQ, BUT WE GOT HIM BACK AND HEíS BEEN AN ENORMOUS HELP FOR US ON THE NEPA SIDE. HE WILL TALK ABOUT ONE OF THE MAIN PURPOSES OF THIS CONFERENCE, WHICH IS THE SORT OF MIDTERM LOOK HERE AT WHAT WE CAN DO TO CONTINUE TO IMPROVE OUR PROCESSES. TED WAS VERY INVOLVED IN THE NEPA EXERCISE THAT MANY OF YOU WERE ENGAGED IN A FEW WEEKS AGO IN CALIFORNIA, AND THAT HAS YIELDED SOME RESULTS THAT YOU SAW YESTERDAY; TED WILL DISCUSS THOSE. THEN WE WILL HAVE DAN ASH, WHO IS THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE AND OUR NOMINEE TO BECOME THE DIRECTOR OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE DO YOU HAVE A HEARING YET, DAN, A HEARING DATE? NEXT TUESDAY. NEXT TUESDAY, SO PLEASE COME IN FORCE WITH YOUR BANNERS TO RECOMMEND DAN ASHE TO BE THE DIRECTOR OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. WE ARE VERY EXCITED ABOUT THAT. DAN IS GOING TO INTRODUCE THE SUBJECT OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE ROLE HERE, WHICH IS OBVIOUSLY HUGE, AND GARY FRAZIER, ONE OF HIS LIEUTENANTS, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR FOR ENDANGERED SPECIES, IS GOING TO TALK SPECIFICALLY ABOUT THE INITIATIVES OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE TO FACILITATE THE CITING OF PROJECTS ON PRIVATE LAND AND HOW TO DEAL WITH ESA COMPLIANCE. BRIAN ARROYO, THE ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF FISH AND WILDLIFE FOR FISHERIES AND HABITAT CONSERVATION, IS GOING TO DISCUSS THE WIND TURBINE GUIDELINES THAT CAME OUT IN DRAFT FORM YESTERDAY. WE WANT YOUR COMMENTS. THAT GREW OUT OF THE FACA COMMITTEE WE HAD ON WIND TURBINE INTERACTIONS. HE WILL GIVE A FEW HIGHLIGHTS OF THAT. AND THEN PAUL SCHMIDT, THE ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF FISH AND WILDLIFE FOR MIGRATORY BIRDS, WILL TALK ABOUT THE DRAFT GUIDANCE THAT CAME OUT YESTERDAY ON THE BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLE PROTECTION ACT, WHICH HAS BEEN A CENTRAL ISSUE FOR A NUMBER OF PROJECTS. HE WILL GIVE A FEW HIGHLIGHTS OF THAT. WE'LL HAVE SOME Q&A, AND WE WILL SET YOU UP FOR YOUR WORKING SESSIONS OVER LUNCH. SO LET ME TURN IT OVER TO BOB, AND WE WILL GO RIGHT DOWN THE LINE. BOB

WELL THANK YOU, DAVID. LIKE STEVE, I WANT TO ALSO WELCOME ALL OF YOU WHO HAVE TRAVELED LONG DISTANCES TO COME TO D.C. TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS SESSION. YOU HAVE BEEN AN IMPORTANT COMPONENT OF THE DIALOGUE STARTED SEVERAL YEARS BACK. YOU WILL BE AN IMPORTANT PART OF ANY SUCCESS THAT WE ACHIEVE IN THE FUTURE. SO AGAIN I REALLY APPRECIATE THE WORK YOU HAVE DONE, YOUR ENGAGEMENT AND CONTINUED INVOLVEMENT. IT IS NO ACCIDENT THAT WE HAVE FOUR FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE EMPLOYEES ON THIS PANEL TODAY. THEY TOO HAVE BEEN A SIGNIFICANT PARTNER WITH US IN THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT TO ALLOW US TO MOVE FORWARD AND BE SMART FROM THE START. WE HAVE LEARNED A LOT OF LESSONS OVER THE PAST COUPLE OF YEARS AND WE WILL SHARE SOME OF THOSE LESSONS WITH YOU DURING THE NEXT DAY AND A HALF TO DEMONSTRATE THAT WE HAVE LISTENED, WE HAVE LEARNED, AND WE ARE GOING TO GO FORWARD AND ACHIEVE OUR GOAL OF BEING THE BEST THAT WE CAN BE WITHIN THE BUREUA OF LAND MANAGEMENT IN SERVING THE PUBLIC TO THE BEST OF OUR ABILITIES. YOU KNOW THE POLITICAL INSTABILITY IN EGYPT AND THE POTENTIAL TO SPREAD TO OTHER COUNTRIES IN THAT REGION IS JUST ANOTHER INDICATION OF WHY WE IN THE UNITED STATES NEED TO BE THINKING AGGRESSIVELY ABOUT SHIFTING OUR ECONOMY FROM DEPENDENCE ON FOSSIL FUELS TO ONE WHERE RENEWABLE ENERGY IS PART OF OUR NATIONAL ENERGY PORTFOLIO. TO UNDERSTAND AND APPRECIATE WHERE WE ARE GOING, IT MAY HELP TO JUST TALK ABOUT WHERE WE HAVE BEEN. IT WAS IN 2009, AND THAT IS JUST TWO YEARS AGO, BLM HAD APPROVED NO SOLAR ENERGY PROJECTS EVEN THOUGH WE HAD OVER 200 APPLICATIONS PENDING IN OUR BLM OFFICES. THIS IS JUST SOLAR. MANY OF WHICH OF THOSE APPLICATIONS WERE SPECULATIVE IN NATURE. AND YET THOSE APPLICATIONS WERE REQUIRING US TO EXPAND OUR EMPLOYEES' TIME TO REVIEW THOSE APPLICATIONS. THEY WERE ALSO TAKING UP LAND THAT COULD HAVE BEEN USED BY OTHER POTENTIAL APPLICANTS AND PROJECT PROPONENTS AND WE DID NOT REALLY HAVE A GOOD SYSTEM IN PLACE AT THAT POINT IN TIME TO GO FORWARD AND SCREEN THOSE APPLICATIONS AND BE ABLE TO MOVE THOSE SPECULATIVE APPLICATIONS FROM OUR WORKLOAD SO THAT WE COULD THEN DEVOTE OUR ATTENTION ON THOSE PROJECTS THAT HAVE THE BEST CHANCE OF GOING FORWARD. WE RECEIVED SOME VERY PUBLIC CRITICISM FOR OUR PROCESSES, AND RIGHTLY SO. WE TOOK THAT CRITICISM TO HEART, AND WE HAVE MOVED FORWARD AS AGGRESSIVELY AS WE CAN. BUT, AGAIN, NOT SHORTCHANGING THE PROCESSES THAT ARE REQUIRED BY LAW AS WE WENT FORWARD, LOOKED AT THOSE APPLICATIONS AND FIGURED OUT THE PROCESS THAT HAD THE BEST CHANCE OF HELPING US ACHIEVE OUR COMMON GOAL. IN THAT SAME YEAR, WE WERE DOING A LITTLE BIT BETTER IN WIND. WE HAD APPROVED TWO PROJECTS, ONE IN UTAH AND ONE IN ARIZONA. WE WERE ABLE TO APPROVE THESE AT THE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT LEVEL BY TIERING OFF A PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT THAT HAD BEEN COMPLETED IN 2005. WE HAVE LEARNED FROM THIS EXPERIENCE, AND THE LESSON THAT WE LEARNED IS THAT WE REALLY DID NEED TO BE MORE ACTIVE IN APPROACHING RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT IN A STRATEGIC, PROACTIVE, AND COMPREHENSIVE MANNER. THAT IS THE MESSAGE THAT MANY OF YOU IN THIS ROOM TOLD US. IF BLM IS TO DO THIS JOB AND DO IT RIGHT, YOU NEED TO HAVE A STRATEGIC, PROACTIVE, AND COMPREHENSIVE PROGRAM IN PLACE. SO WITH A LOT OF HARD WORK AND FOCUS WE HAVE COME A LONG WAY, BUT WE ARE STILL MOVING FORWARD, MAKING TWEAKS ALONG THE WAY. FOR EXAMPLE, JUST YESTERDAY SECRETARY SALAZAR ANNOUNCED SEVERAL NEW INITIATIVES THAT WOULD ENCOURAGE RAPID, RESPONSIBLE RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT. THESE NEW STEPS WILL PROVIDE CLARITY AND GUIDANCE NOT ONLY TO STAKEHOLDERS BUT ALSO TO BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT EMPLOYEES THROUGHOUT THE WESTERN UNITED STATES ABOUT SMART CITING AND EFFECTIVE MITIGATION FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS. WHEN I CAME ON BOARD IN 2009, IT WAS CLEAR TO ME FROM THE DIRECTIONS WE WERE RECEIVING FROM THE PRESIDENT AND THE DIRECTION THAT I WAS GETTING DIRECTLY FROM SECRETARY SALAZAR THAT STATUS QUO WAS NOT ACCEPTABLE FOR THOSE OF US WORKING THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT IN RENEWABLE ENERGY. WE NEED TO DO BETTER, SO WE LIT A FIRE UNDER OUR RENEWABLE ENERGY PROGRAM AND WE PLACED SOME OF OUR BEST EMPLOYEES IN THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT IN OUR RENEWABLE ENERGY PROGRAM TO LEAD OUR EFFORTS SO THAT WE HAD A CHANCE TO BE SUCCESSFUL. MANY OF THOSE EMPLOYEES ARE IN THE ROOM TODAY AND YOU WILL BE HEARING FROM THEM OVER THE NEXT DAY AND A HALF AND THEY TOO WILL BE SHARING THE LESSONS THAT THEY LEARNED AND THE PROCESSES THAT WEíVE ADAPTED TO BE THE BEST THAT WE CAN BE. WE ESTABLISH RENEWABLE ENERGY COORDINATION OFFICES IN CALIFORNIA, NEVADA, ARIZONA, AND WYOMING. THESE OFFICES, ALONG WITH OUR RENEWABLE PERMITTING TEAMS LOCATED IN SIX OTHER STATES, HELPED US TO SWIFTLY COMPLETE APPLICATION REVIEWS ON THE MOST READY-TO-GO AND ENVIRONMENTALLY APPROPRIATE SOLAR, WIND, AND GEOTHERMAL PROJECTS ON U.S. PUBLIC LANDS. LAST YEAR, THANKS TO THE HARD WORK OF OUR STAFFS, AND THANKS TO THE WILLINGNESS OF PROJECT PROPONENTS TO ENGAGING IN A DIRECT DIALOGUE WITH PUBLIC LAND STAKEHOLDERS, THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR IMPROVED NEARLY 4,000 MEGAWATTS OF WIND, GEOTHERMAL, AND SOLAR POWER. THIS YEAR AND INTO 2012 WE ANTICIPATE THAT WE WILL REVIEW ANOTHER 15 TO 20 RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS THAT INCLUDE A MIX OF SOLAR, WIND, AND GEOTHERMAL, WITH THE POTENTIAL CAPACITY OF ANOTHER 4,000 MEGAWATTS. YOU WILL BE HEARING LATER THIS MORNING FROM MIKE POOLE, OUR DEPUTY DIRECTOR FOR BLM, OUR OPERATIONS, AND HE WILL GO INTO THE SPECIFICS OF THE CONTENTS OF THE INSTRUCTIONAL MEMORANDAS THAT WE ISSUED TO OUR FIELD OFFICES YESTERDAY. I WILL JUST SAY THAT THE EMPHASIS IN THESE DOCUMENTS INCLUDE THE NEED FOR EARLY COORDINATION AND CAREFUL REVIEW WITH FEDERAL, STATE, TRIBAL, AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS FOR PROPOSED PROJECTS SOTHAT TOGETHER WE CAN IDENTIFY AND PRIORITIZE APPLICATIONS THAT HAVE THE FEWEST RESOURCE CONFLICTS AND THE GREATEST LIKELIHOOD OF SUCCESS. NOW THAT YOU KNOW WHERE WE WERE IN 2009 AND HAVE AT LEAST AN IDEA OF WHERE WE ARE HEADED AT LEAST IN THE NEAR FUTURE, I WOULD LIKE TO TELL YOU SOME OF THE THINGS WE WERE ABLE TO ACCOMPLISH IN SPECIFIC AREAS, AND I WILL BEGIN WITH SOLAR. SECRETARY SALAZAR IDENTIFIED SOME OF THESE SUCCESSES, BUT I AM GOING TO GO INTO THEM WITH A LITTLE MORE DETAIL. WE APPROVED NINE LARGE-SCALE SOLAR ENERGY PROJECTS IN CALIFORNIA AND NEVADA LAST YEAR. THAT CUMULATIVELY WILL GENERATE MORE THAN 3,600 MEGAWATTS. JUST AS IMPORTANT AS THE POWER, IT WILL ALSO CREATE 7,000 ADDITIONAL JOBS. THROUGH THE AMERICAN RECOVERY AND REINVESTMENT ACT THE COMPANIES INVOLVED IN THESE PROJECTS CAN QUALIFY FOR GRANTS IN LIEU OF TAX CREDITS; UP TO 30 PERCENT OF THE PROJECTíS ELIGIBLE COST. YOU HEARD SECRETARY CHU TALK ABOUT THAT. IN 2008, THE BLM IN COOPERATION WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY INITIATED A SOLAR PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT, A COMPREHENSIVE ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS THAT IDENTIFIES PUBLIC LANDS IN SIX WESTERN STATES THAT MIGHT, MIGHT BE SUITABLE FOR ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND UTILITY-SCALE SOLAR PROJECTS. THE PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT EVALUATES TECHNOLOGIES THAT ARE CONSIDERED TO BE THE MOST VIABLE FOR DEVELOPMENT OVER THE NEXT 20 YEARS. WE EXPANDED THE SCOPE OF THAT PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT TO INCLUDE AN IN-DEPTH ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS OF SOME 1,000 SQUARE MILES OF PUBLIC LANDS THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR SET ASIDE FOR 24 SOLAR ENERGY STUDY AREAS IN WHICH THE BLM WOULD PRIORITIZE SOLAR ENERGY DEVELOPMENT. WE ARE CLOSELY REVIEWING THESE AREAS TO DETERMINE WHETHER OR NOT THEY ARE COMPATIBLE FOR COMMERCIAL SCALE SOLAR DEVELOPMENT. OUR OBJECTIVES ARE SIMPLE. THEY ARE TO PROVIDE A MORE EFFICIENT PROCESS FOR PERMITTING SOLAR PROJECTS AND IN THE MOST APPROPRIATE AREAS. WE ISSUED THE DRAFT PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT IN DECEMBER, 2010, AND NOW IT IS UNDERGOING A 90-DAY PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD. WE HELD OUR FIRST OF 13 PUBLIC MEETINGS ON FEBRUARY 2ND RIGHT HERE IN THE NATIONíS CAPITAL. LAST JUNE WE RELEASED A RENTAL SCHEDULE FOR SOLAR ENERGY RIGHTS OF WAY AUTHORIZATIONS ON PUBLIC LANDS AS REQUIRED BY THE FEDERAL LAND POLICY AND MANAGEMENT ACT. DOING SO WAS A KEY STEP IN PROVIDING FOR THE INDUSTRY THE LEVEL OF CERTAINTY IT NEEDS TO KNOW ABOUT THE COST ASSOCIATED WITH DEVELOPING SOLAR PROJECTS ON PUBLIC LANDS. IN THE AREA OF WIND ENERGY, THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT HAD A PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT IN PLACE SINCE 2005. ONE OF THE OUTCOMES OF THE DEVELOPMENT AND APPROVAL OF THAT PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT WAS TO AMEND 52 LAND USE PLANS TO FACILITATE WIND ENERGY DEVELOPMENT ON PUBLIC LANDS MANAGED BY BLM. IN 2009, WE DEDICATED ARIZONAíS FIRST COMMERCIAL SCALE WIND ENERGY PROJECT LOCATED ON BLM-MANAGE LANDS, THE DRY LAKE WIND POWER PROJECT, LOCATED JUST NORTH OF HEBER, ARIZONA. THIS PROJECT IS LOCATED ON FEDERAL, STATE, AND PRIVATE LAND. IT WAS TIERED OFF THE WIND ENERGY PROGRAMMATIC EIS. IT IS NOW SENDING CLEAN RENEWABLE ENERGY TO OVER 15,000 HOMES IN THE PHOENIX AREA. PHASE ONE OF THE MILFORD WIND PROJECT IN SOUTHWEST UTAH WAS APPROVED IN 2009. PHASE TWO OF THE PROJECT WAS APPROVED IN 2010. THIS PROJECT IS ALSO LOCATED ON FEDERAL, STATE, AND PRIVATE LANDS. IT IS ALSO TIERED OFF THE WIND ENERGY PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT AND WHEN COMPLETED IT WILL BE CAPABLE OF GENERATING 300 MEGAWATTS OF RENEWABLE ENERGY. THEN THIS LAST YEAR, WE APPROVED 150 MEGAWATTS SPRING VALLEY WIND PROJECT NEAR ELY, NEVADA. WE ANTICIPATE THAT PROJECT TO BE UNDER CONSTRUCTION THIS YEAR. UNLIKE THE SOLAR AND WIND ENERGY, WHICH THE BLM PERMITS THROUGH ITS RIGHTS OF WAY PROCESS, WE ALSO HAVE A VERY AGGRESSIVE GEOTHERMAL ENERGY PROGRAM. GEOTHERMAL IS A LEASABLE ENERGY SOURCE. BLM, THROUGH OUR LAND USE PLANNING PROCESSES, HAS ALLOCATED 111 MILLION ACRES AS AVAILABLE FOR POTENTIAL LEASING OF GEOTHERMAL RESOURCES. AN ADDITIONAL 79 MILLION ACRES OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM LAND IS ALSO AVAILABLE FOR GEOTHERMAL LEASING. WEíVE HELD 9 COMPETITIVE GEOTHERMAL LEASE SALES SINCE 2007. WE SOLD 332 LEASE PARCELS WITH A TOTAL SALE RECEIPT OF $77 MILLION. YOU HEARD SECRETARIES SALAZAR, VILSACK, AND CHU TALK ABOUT THE CHALLENGES OF GETTING THE POWER WHERE IT IS BEING GENERATED TO THE MARKET. SOMETHING THAT WE HAVE TOO BEEN GIVING A GREAT DEAL OF THOUGHT AND A GREAT DEAL OF ACTION TOWARD MAKING SURE THAT WE HAVE APPROPRIATE TRANSMISSION CORRIDORS AVAILABLE THROUGHOUT THE WESTERN UNITED STATES, SO THAT THIS ENERGY CAN BE DELIVERED TO THE MARKET. THE DEPARTMENTS OF INTERIOR, ENERGY, AGRICULTURE, AND DEFENSE HAVE RELEASED A FINAL PROGRAMMATIC EIS IN LATE 2008 ON ENERGY TRANSMISSION CORRIDORS THROUGHOUT THE WESTERN UNITED STATES. IN PART OF THE RECORD DECISION THAT WAS ISSUED FROM THATJOINT EFFORT, THE BLM HAS DESIGNATED OVER 6,000 MILES OF ENERGY TRANSPORT CORRIDORS ON FEDERAL LANDS IN 11 STATES. WE HAVE LEARNED A LOT OVER THE PAST COUPLE OF YEARS. AS WE HAVE STARTED DOWN THE PATH OF DIVERSIFYING OUR ENERGY PORTFOLIO AND CREATING A CLEAN ENERGY FRONTIER, THOSE OF US WHO ARE WORKING IN THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT IN THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE AND THROUGHOUT THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR, IN CONCERT WITH OUR MANY STAKEHOLDERS, ARE DETERMINED THAT THE RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS THAT WE PERMIT WILL BE SMARTER FROM THE START AND BY WORKING WITH YOU, WE WILL ACHIEVE THAT GOAL. WE HAVE THOROUGHLY EVALUATED THE LESSONS THAT WE HAVE LEARNED TO DATE AND ARE APPLYING THOSE LESSONS TO OUR PROCESSES. YOU KNOW I AM OPTIMISTIC THAT THE NEW GUIDELINES THAT WE ISSUED YESTERDAY, WHICH WERE SUGGESTED BY SOME OF YOU IN THE ROOM, WILL HELP US TO MORE OFFICIALLY ACCOMMODATE AND FACILITATE AS APPROPRIATE RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS ON PUBLIC LANDS. AS STEWARDS OF OUR PUBLIC LANDS WE MUST MAKE SURE THAT WE ARE DEVELOPING RENEWABLE ENERGY IN THE RIGHT WAY AND IN THE RIGHT PLACES. FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT DO NOT KNOW ME, I HAVE 32 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE WORKING IN PUBLIC SERVICE. DURING THAT PERIOD OF TIME, I HAVE WORKED ON MANY WORTHWHILE PROJECTS AND INITIATIVES. I HAVE BEEN FORTUNATE TO BE PUT IN THAT ROLE. BUT EVEN LOOKING BACK OVER THAT 32-YEAR PERIOD, THERE IS NOTHING I'M MORE PROUD ABOUT THAN WHAT WE ARE WORKING ON TODAY, AND THAT IS DIVERSIFYING OUR NATIONíS ENERGY PORTFOLIO BY MAKING GREATER USE OF OUR RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES IN THIS UNITED STATES. WHILE WE HAVE DONE SOME THINGS, THERE ARE IS STILL MUCH TO BE DONE. AND THOSE OF US AT BLM ARE ENCOURAGED BY OUR ACTIONS TO DATE, AND WE ARE MORE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE FUTURE. THERE IS A JOB TO BE DONE AND WE ARE COMMITTED TO ACCOMPLISHING THAT, AND SET THE STAGE TO BUILD A FOUNDATION FOR OTHERS TO BUILD ON IN THE NEAR FUTURE. SO DAVID, THAT IS THE STATUS REPORT, AND WE LOOK FORWARD TO YOUR HEARING YOUR QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS THAT YOU MAY HAVE TO OFFER LATER ON.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, BOB. WE ARE VERY FORTUNATE TO HAVE BOB. LET ME MAKE A SMALL COMMENT HERE. BOB HAS DEVOTED HIS CAREER TO PUBLIC SERVICE, AND I THINK PERHAPS ONE OF THE HIGH POINTS AND LOW POINTS WAS WHEN WE ACTUALLY HAD HIM AS THE ACTING DIRECTOR OF THE MINERALS MANAGEMENT SERVICE, IN SOME DARK DAYS AS WE WERE DEALING WITH A TERRIBLE DISASTER IN THE GULF AND BOB STEPPED UP AND HELPED US THROUGH THAT PERIOD. THERE IS NO MORE COMMITTED PUBLIC SERVANT TO GETTING INPUT TO MAKING SENSIBLE DECISIONS THAN BOB ABBEY. BUT I WILL STOP WITH SLAVERING OVER BOB NOW. WE ARE GOING TO MOVE ON TO TED BOLING.

THANK YOU. IíD LIKE TO ADD TO THAT IF I MAY. THANK YOU DAVID, AND THANK YOU BOB FOR YOUR PUBLIC SERVICE, AND ALSO THANK YOU TO THE STAKEHOLDERS WHO CONTRIBUTED TO THE PROCESS OF THE DECISIONMAKING TO MAKE SMART FROM THE START SMARTER, AND MORE EFFECTIVE. I LEARNED TODAY THAT I' SITTING NEXT TO THE MAN WHO COINED THE PHRASE I AM HONORED TO BE PARTICIPATING IN THIS HISTORIC UNDERTAKING. IN 2005, IN THE ENERGY POLICY ACT, CONGRESS SET A NATIONAL GOAL OF 10,000 MEGAWATTS OF RENEWABLE ENERGY GENERATION FROM THE PUBLIC LANDS. BOB HAS SUMMARIZED WHERE WE STOOD ON THAT NATIONAL GOAL. 10,000 MEGAWATTS BY 2015. BOB SUMMARIZED WHERE WE STAND ON A NATIONAL GOAL AS OF 2009. BUT WE HAVE MADE EXTRAORDINARY PROGRESS UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF SECRETARY SALAZAR, DEPUTY SECRETARY HAYES, AND BOB ABBEY, FOR YOUR LEADERSHIP, AND BRINGING PEOPLE TOGETHER AND DOING IT IN THE RIGHT WAY THROUGH CAREFUL ATTENTION TO THE PUBLIC PROCESSES, THE LAWS, THE POLICIES THAT GUIDE SMART DEVELOP, STRIVING TO MAKE OUR PROCESS SMARTER AS WE GO. THIS IS A PROCESS OF LEARNING AS WE GO ALONG. AS PART OF THAT PROCESS, THE ENERGY REFORM TEAM THAT HAS BEEN COLLECTED AT THE OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR LAND AND MINERALS, WILMA LEWIS, UNDERTOOK AN EVALUATION OF THE NEPA PROCESS AND THE DOCUMENTS THAT WERE COLLECTED, THE RECORDS OF DECISION, AND BLM'S RESPONSE TO COMMENTS ON THE FAST-TRACK PROJECTS OF 2009 AND 2010. THEY LOOKED AT THE NINE SOLAR PROJECTS THAT WERE APPROVED. THE FIRST WIND PROJECT IN NEVADA, THE SPRING VALLEY WIND PROJECT, AND A COUPLE OF GEOTHERMAL PROJECTS. IF YOU ARE WONDERING, IF YOU ARE A PARTICIPANT IN THE NEPA PROCESS AND SEND IN COMMENTS, AND ARE WONDERING WHATEVER COMES OF THAT, IT IS NOT JUST FOR THE PURPOSES OF THAT PROJECT. WE REALLY TAKE TO HEART THIS VALUABLE RESOURCE AND THE MEANS FOR IMPROVING THE PROCESS. THEY DID A DIGESTION OF THAT THAT WAS CONSIDERED BY A GROUP OF AN INTERAGENCY GROUP CONVENED AT THE OFFICES OF CALIFORNIA, THE STATE BLM OFFICE UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF JIM ABBOTT. WE HAD A BROAD CROSS SECTION OF PROJECT MANAGERS, OF WASHINGTON OFFICE FACILITATORS, RECOGNIZING THAT IT IS NOT ALL ABOUT CALIFORNIA, WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, BUT THAT THE FUTURE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY IS DISTRIBUTED AROUND THE WEST. WE HAD 13 BLM OFFICES PARTICIPATING BY VIDEOCONFERENCE SO WE CAN REDUCE THE CARBON FOOTPRINT OF GETTING EVERYONE TO SACRAMENTO FOR THIS MEETING, BUT ENSURING THAT WE HAVE QUALITY INPUT. WE COULD GO THROUGH ALL OF THE ISSUES THAT WERE RAISED REALLY ENGAGE THEM IN A JOINT PROBLEM-SOLVING EXERCISE. IT WAS NOT JUST BLM, CERTAINLY AN ACTIVE ENGAGEMENTS FROM THE SOLICITORíS OFFICE WHICH WAS INDISPENSABLE, AND THEN THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, WE WILL BE HEARING FROM PAUL SCHMIDT, NOW WHO IS AN ACTIVE PARTICIPANT ON THE EAGLE ACT AND THOSE ISSUES. WE HEARD FROM WAYNE DONALDSON, THE CHAIR OF THE ADVISORY COUNCIL ON HISTORICAL PRESERVATION, PARTICULARLY ON THE ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL CULTURAL RESOURCE ISSUES, OUR GOVERNMENT-TO-GOVERNMENT RELATIONSHIPS AND OUR CONSULTATION PROCESSES AND HOW DO WE MAKE THAT WORK BETTER. A FULL RANGE OF ISSUES. I COULD PROBABLY SPEND ALL DAY GIVING CREDIT TO THE MANY PARTICIPANTS THERE. I WOULD CALL OUT STEVE BLACK WAS INSTRUMENTAL IN HELPING PULL THIS MEETING TOGETHER, GUIDE IT, AN ACTIVE PARTICIPANT AND THEN RAY BRADY, WHO IS IN THE BLM WHO HAS BEEN THE DRIVING FORCE AND LEADER OF A VIBRANT INTERAGENCY GROUP. BUT IT IS JUST A SMALL CROSS SECTION OF A VAST COORDINATION EXERCISE THAT HAS BEEN THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR'S LEADERSHIP, PULLING TOGETHER RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS DECISIONS, NOT JUST FOR 2009, 2010, BUT ON INTO THE FUTURE. IT HAS INVOLVED OVER 200 PEOPLE FROM BLM, OVER 30 PEOPLE JUST ACTIVELY, DIRECTLY ENGAGED FROM THE PARK SERVICE, 80 FROM THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE BY OUR BEST ESTIMATE, A TEAM FROM THE SOLICITORíS OFFICE AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS, AND THE ACTIVE COLLABORATION FROM OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES, FROM STATE GOVERNMENTS, FROM TRIBES, AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS, NON-GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATIONS, AND APPLICANTS. SO WHAT YOU HAD ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY BY SECRETARY SALAZAR WERE A SERIES OF INSTRUCTION MEMORANDA FROM THE BLM TO HELP GUIDE PROJECT DEVELOPMENT IN THE FUTURE, AND THEY ARE A START IN THIS IN THIS ITERATIVE PROCESS IN THE WAY WE DO OUR NEPA ANALYSIS. PEALSE DO NOT TAKE THEM AS AN END IN AND OF THEMSELVES. ONE OF THOSE GUIDANCE DOCUMENTS WAS REGARDING THE PRE APPLICATION PROCESS. ITíS A PHASE OF APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT, RIGHTS OF WAY APPLICATION, THATíS PROVIDED FOR IN THE REGULATIONS, BUT REALLY IN A FAIRLY SPARE FASHION IT DOES NOT GIVE THE IMPORTANCE OF PREAPPLICATION COORDINATION, REALLY ITíS DUE. SO WE HAVE EXPANDED GUIDANCE THERE THAT UNDERSCORES THE CRITICAL NATURE OF THAT COORDINATION WITH NOT JUST OF THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT BUT THROUGH A SERIES OF MEETINGS, ALL INTERESTED AGENCIES, FEDERAL AGENCIES WITH JURISDICTION AND EXPERTISE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO BE PARTICIPANTS IN THE NEPA PROCESS, AS WELL AS ALSO OTHER INTERESTED PARTIES AS NEED BE TO MAKE SURE THAT AN APPLICATION IS WELL FORMED, WELL FRAMED. IT IS GOING TO BE WELL REFLECTED IN THE NEPA PROCESS THAT WE ARE NOT JUST RELYING ON SCOPING BUT THAT OUR PURPOSE AND NEED AND OUR RANGE OF ALTERNATIVES, WHICH IS OF COURSE THE HEART OF THE NEPA PROCESS, CAPTURES THE FULL RANGE OF REASONABLE ALTERNATIVES, IN THAT THE TRADE- OFFS ARE ADEQUATELY ADDRESSED SO THAT DECISION MAKERS LIKE SECRETARY SALAZAR AND BOB ABBEY ARE NOT PRESENTED WITH A FAIT ACCOMPLI, AN UNNATURALLY NARROW RANGE OF ALTERNATIVES AND A CRITICAL DEADLINE, BUT THATWHEN THEY HAVE THE DECISION ON THEIR DESKS, THEY HAVE A FULL RANGE OF OPTIONS FOR ADDRESSING THE PUBLIC INTEREST. WITH REGARD TO A RANGE OF ALTERNATIVES, THE SECOND GUIDANCE DOCUMENT ADDRESSES THE PURPOSE AND NEED, UNDERSCORING THAT THE PURPOSE AND NEED FOR THESE ACTIONS IS THE PUBLIC PURPOSE AND NEED. OUR PURPOSE AND NEED IS INFORMED BY THE APPLICANT'S INTEREST AND APPLICANTíS OBJECTIVES. BUT ULTIMATELY THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT UNDER FLPMA HAS THE DISCRETION TO ACCEPT THE APPLICATION, TO REJECT AN APPLICATION, OR TO MAKE MODIFICATIONS. THE MODIFICATIONS COULD INCLUDE CHANGES IN LOCATION, REDUCING THE FOOTPRINT, REDUCING THE IMPACT. SO WE ADDRESS IN THAT GUIDANCE DOCUMENT, A NUMBER OF THE ALTERNATIVES THAT HAVE BEEN AN ISSUE FOR BLM THROUGH THIS PROCESS AND ITíS IS REALLY A RESULT OF THAT COLLECTIVE LEARNING PROCESS, WITH THE WASHINGTON OFFICE, THE BLM ACTIVELY PARTICIPATING, AND HOW DO WE DO THIS SORT OF PROBLEM SOLVING EXERCISE. THE GUIDANCE IS NOT IN AND OF ITSELF, THAT INTERAGENCY COORDINATION HAS BEEN CREATED AND WILL CARRY FORWARD THROUGH THE YEAR, AND WE WILL UNDERTAKE TO EVALUATE NON- PUBLIC LAND ALTERNATIVES, OTHER PUBLIC LAND ALTERNATIVES. MODIFICATIONS TO TECHNOLOGY, IN THIS REGARD, COORDINATION WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY IS INDISPENSABLE. EVALUATIONS OF DIFFERENT TECHNOLOGY, IN CASE A PROJECT MOVES ALONG TO THE POINT WHERE THE APPLICANT WILL CHANGE THEIR TECHNOLOGY. AS WELL AS ALSO WAYS TO REDUCE THE FOOTPRINT, REDUCE THE IMPACTS BE THEM VISUAL, SPECIES IMPACTS, WHAT HAVE YOU. ALSO, A THIRD ASPECT OF THAT GUIDANCE IS TO FOCUS ON PARTICULARLY THOSE AREAS THAT ARE NATIONALLY DESIGNATED FOR CONSERVATION PURPOSES, THE UNITES IN THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM, WILDERNESS, CONGRESSIONAL DESIGNATED WILDERNESS AREAS, WILDLIFE REFUGEES. AND TO MAKE SURE THAT THE ANALYSIS OF THAT IS WELL DIGESTED. AS I SAID, THIS IS PART OF THE TRANSITION TO AN IMPROVED PROCESS. IT IS ESSENTIAL TO HAVE YOUR INPUT, BOTH TODAY IN THE WORKSHOPS THROUGH THE NEPA PROCESS. AND FINALLY I WILL JUST NOTE THE SOLAR PROGRAMMATIC ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT THAT BOB MENTIONED WILL BE AN ESSENTIAL TOOL TO TIERING TO SITE-SPECIFIC DECISIONS TO MAKE FOR A BETTER PROCESS. THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS AND YOUR PARTICIPATION TODAY.

ALRIGHT THANK YOU. IT AND LET ME SAY AS SOON AS WE FINISHED THESE SHORT PRESENTATIONS WE WILL OPEN THE FLOOR FOR DISCUSSION AND HAVE A MODERATED DISCUSSION SO WE CAN GET DOWN TO THE BRASS TACKS OF THE SPECIFIC INTERESTS AND SOME ASPECTS OF THE GUIDELINES THAT CAME OUT YESTERDAY FROM BLM AND THE DRAFT PROPOSALS THAT CAME FROM FISH AND WILDLIFE. DAN?

THANK YOU, DAVID. GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE. I WANTED TO START OFF BY THANKING YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE AND TO THANK EACH OF YOU FOR WHAT YOU ARE DOING ON BEHALF OF THE FUTURE OF AMERICA AND THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD. I WANT TO START THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF ACCOLADE ABOUT THE LEADERSHIP THAT WAS PROVIDED BY BOB, DAVID, STEVE BLACK, TOM STRICKLAND, AND THE SECRETARY. THAT IS ALL VERY DUE, BUT WHAT I WANT TO DO IS SHARE SOME OF THAT CERTAINLY WITH THE THREE PEOPLE TO MY LEFT BUT ALSO PEOPLE IN THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE WHO HAVE LITERALLY BEEN MOVING MOUNTAINS OVER THE PAST COUPLE OF MONTHS TO MAKE THE THINGS HAPPEN THAT WE ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY. AND SOME OF THESE PEOPLE ARE HERE IN THE AUDIENCE. AND AS YOU SEE THEM FOR THE REMAINDER OF THIS WORKSHOP, IF YOU DON'T KNOW THEM OR IF YOU DO KNOW THEM, YOU SHOULD GO UP AND GIVE THEM A PAT ON THE BACK. I SEE DAVE STOUT, JEFF UNDERWOOD, MATT HOGAN, BRIAN MILSAP, AND THOSE HAVE BEEN KEY PEOPLE FOR US WHO HAVE WORKED DAYS AND NIGHTS AND WEEKENDS AND GIVEN UP LEAVE AT THE END OF THE YEAR TO GET THESE THINGS DONE. AND I WANT TO MAKE SURE THEY RECEIVE THE ACCOLADE THATíS DUE FOR THAT EFFORT. I AM SURE THEIR EFFORT HAS BEEN MATCHED BY MANY, MANY PEOPLE THROUGHOUT THE BLM AND DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR AND THEY ALL DESERVE OUR ADMIRATION FOR THAT EFFORT. SO I WANT TO TALK A LITTLE BIT TODAY ABOUT BELIEF AND DOUBT. MANY OF YOU, ESPECIALLY IN THE RENEWABLE ENERGY INDUSTRY ITSELF MAY NOT BELIEVE IT, BUT YOU HAVE THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE ON YOUR SIDE. WE BELIEVE THAT RENEWAL ENERGY IS A NATIONAL SECURITY ISSUE. AND WE BELIEVE THAT IT IS AN IMPERATIVE FOR ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP IN THE UNITED STATES. LAST YEAR WE RELEASED OUR CLIMATE CHANGE STRATEGIC PLAN. THAT WAS THE CULMINATION OF MORE THAN TWO YEARS'S WORTH OF EFFORT IN THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. EARLIER ON IN THAT EFFORT WE DEVELOPED A DRAFT AND WE CIRCULATED A DRAFT FOR EMPLOYEES FOR THEIR COMMENTS INTERNALLY. WE GOT AN IMMENSE AMOUNT OF COMMENT FROM OUR EMPLOYEES, BUT THE SINGLE ITEM WE GOT THE MOST COMMENTS ON WAS THE OBJECTIVE WE STATED FOR FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE ITSELF FOR REDUCING OUR CARBON FOOTPRINT. OUR EMPLOYEES DID NOT THINK WE WERE BEING ASPIRATIONAL ENOUGH. THEY FELT IT WAS IMPORTANT FOR THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE TO LEAD BY EXAMPLE, AND THEY SUGGEST A GOAL FOR THE ORGANIZATION OF BEING CARTED NEUTRAL BY 2020. A VERY AMBITIOUS GOAL BUT THEY WANTED TO BE AMBITIOUS. THEY WANTED THE ORGANIZATION TO LEAN FORWARD. SO THAT HAS LED TO AN INCREASING AWARENESS WITHIN THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. I SAW THAT COMMITMENT REFLECTED TWO WEEKS AGO. I VISITED SAN DIEGO BAY NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE WHERE OUR NEW VISITOR AND ADMINISTRATIVE COMPLEX INCORPORATES PHOTOVOLTAIC ENERGY. THAT IS NOT AN ISOLATED EVENT. WE ARE IN THE PROCESS, WITH A LOT OF HELP FROM THE AMERICAN RECOVERY AND REINVESTMENT ACT, AT REBUILDING THE WILDLIFE CONSERVATION INFRASTRUCTURE OF TOMORROW. THROUGHOUT THAT PROCESS WE ARE INCORPORATING SOLAR AND WIND AND GEOTHERMAL ENERGY. WE ARE DOING THAT BECAUSE WE BELIEVE THAT AMERICA'S ENERGY FUTURE MUST CHANGE. AS I SAID, WE ASPIRE TO HELP LEAD THAT CHANGE AND BE EXAMPLES OF THAT CHANGE WITHIN THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. WE BELIEVE WHILE BELIEF IS A POWERFUL FORCE, IT CAN BE PRETTY DELICATE TO DOUBT. WE DO SEE REASONS TO DOUBT AS WE SEE THESE TECHNOLOGIES EMERGING ON THE UTILITY SCALE. SO THE DOCUMENTS WE RELEASED YESTERDAY FOR FURTHER COMMENTS AND DISCUSSION REPRESENT THE INTERSECTION BETWEEN BELIEF AND DOUBT. EVERYONE IN THIS ROOM AND THE ORGANIZATIONS AND INDUSTRIES YOU REPRESENT HOLD THE POTENTIAL TO INSPIRE GREATER BELIEF OR REINFORCE DOUBT AS WE MOVE FORWARD. I HAVE TWO CHILDREN. ONE HAS GRADUATED COLLEGE AND ONE IS IN COLLEGE AND THEY BOTH PLAYED COMPETITIVE SPORTS TO THE COLLEGE LEVEL. ONE THING I LEARNED FROM WATCHING THEM PLAY COMPETITIVE SPORTS IS AS YOU GO TO HIGHER AND HIGHER LEVELS IN COMPETITIVE SPORTS, ALL TEAMS HAVE TALENT. THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GOOD AND GREAT TEAMS IS REALLY THE DIFFERENCE, THAT INTERSECTION BETWEEN BELIEF AND DOUBT. AS WE GO FORWARD IN RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION, THE DIFFERENCE IS GOING TO BE IN THAT INTERSECTION BETWEEN BELIEF AND DOUBT. AS A RENEWABLE ENERGY INDUSTRY YOU HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO NOT JUST CHANGE THE WAY WE GENERATE ENERGY. YOU HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO CHANGE THE WAY THAT WE THINK ABOUT ENERGY, AND PARTICULARLY HOW WE THINK ABOUT THE INTERSECTION BETWEEN ENERGY AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION. THAT IS SOMETHING TO WORK FOR. THAT IS SOMETHING I WANT TO WORK FOR. THAT IS SOMETHING THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE WANTS TO WORK FOR. THAT IS WHATíS REPRESENTED, I THINK, BY THE EFFORTS MY THREE COLLEAGUES WILL ADDRESS NEXT. THESE EFFORTS REPRESENT THE BELIEF THAT WE CAN MOVE AWAY FROM THE PROJECT-BY-PROJECT COMBAT THAT HAS CHARACTERIZED ENERGY DEVELOPMENT OF THE PAST THE BELIEF THAT WE CAN SEE RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT AS A SUSTAINABLE FEATURE OF THE LANDSCAPE, SUPPORTING POPULATION-LEVEL CONSERVATION OF WILDLIFE. THE REMARKS OF THESE NEXT THE THREE LEADERS AND THE DIALOGUE THAT WE ARE BEGINNING TODAY REFLECT THAT BELIEF AND THE OPPORTUNITY TO CHANGE THE WAY WE THINK ABOUT ENERGY DEVELOPMENT AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION. WE LOOK FORWARD TO THAT CONVERSATION. THANKS.  

THANKS, DAN. I THINK YOU CAN SEE WHY WE ARE SO EXCITED ABOUT HAVING DAN ASHE AS THE NEXT DIRECTOR OF THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. MY NAME IS GARY FRAISER, AND I AM THE ASSISTANT DIRECTOR FOR ENDANGERED SPECIES WITH THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. I AM HERE TO SPEAK TO YOU THIS MORNING ABOUT THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT COMPLIANCE WITH REGARD TO RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS. THE PURPOSE OF THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT IS TO PROTECT AND RECOVER IMPERILED SPECIES AND THE ECOSYSTEMS UPON WHICH THEY DEPEND. AS YOU NO DOUBT KNOW, IT IS A STRONG ACT WITH SUBSTANTIVE PROVISIONS, EXPLICIT PROHIBITIONS, AND A BROAD GRANT OF AUTHORITY FOR CITIZENS TO BRING SUIT TO CHALLENGE NONCOMPLIANCE. IT IS ALSO A LAW THAT GIVES US ROOM TO ADAPT TO NEW CHALLENGES AND CRAFTWORK WORKABLE SOLUTIONS. THE ACT PROHIBITS FEDERAL AGENCIES FROM DOING ANYTHING THAT WOULD JEOPARDIZE THE CONTINUED EXISTENCE OF A THREATENED OR ENDANGERED SPECIES OR DESTROY ITS CRITICAL HABITATS. PROJECTS THAT THREATENED OR ENDANGERED SPECIES AND THEIR CRITICAL HABITAT AND THAT HAVE FEDERAL AGENCY INVOLVEMENT ARE REVIEWED UNDER PROCEDURES OF SECTION 7 OF THE ACT. THESE REVIEWS ARE REFERRED TO AS SECTION 7 CONSULTATIONS AND WHEN THE SPECIES OR THEIR CRITICAL HABITATS ARE LIKELY TO BE HARMED BY A PROJECT, IT RESULTS IN AN ISSUANCE BY THE SERVICE OF A BIOLOGICAL OPINION. IF THE SERVICE DETERMINES THAT A PROJECT IS LIKELY TO JEOPARDIZE THE CONTINUED EXISTENCE OF A LISTED SPECIES OR ADVERSELY MODIFY ITS DESIGNATED CRITICAL HABITAT, THE SERVICE WILL RECOMMEND REASONABLE AND PRUDENT ALTERNATIVES TO THE PROJECT DESIGN OR OPERATION TO AVOID THAT OUTCOME. THE STANDARD TIME FRAME FOR COMPLETING THE CONSULTATION PROCESS IS 135 DAYS, ALTHOUGH THAT MAY BE EXTENDED BY MUTUAL AGREEMENT. BECAUSE SECTION 7 CONSULTATIONS ARE JUST ONE ELEMENT OF ANOTHER AGENCYíS REVIEW PROCESS, OTHER ELEMENTS OF THAT PROCESS OFTEN CONTRIBUTE MORE SIGNIFICANTLY TO THE TIME REQUIRED TO REACH A FINAL DECISION, PARTICULARLY IF THE PROJECT INVOLVES AN ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT. THE ESA ALSO PROHIBITS ACTIONS THAT WOULD TAKE A LISTED SPECIES, THAT IS ACTIONS THAT WOULD HARM OR INJURE OR KILL A SPECIES WITHOUT AUTHORIZATION. FOR OTHERWISE LAWFUL PRIVATE ACTIVITY, THAT AUTHORIZATION IS AVAILABLE THROUGH SECTION 10 PERMIT THAT IS ISSUED BY THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. THAT PROCESS LAID OUT IN THE STATUTE REQUIRES DEVELOPMENT OF A HABITAT CONSERVATION PLAN. IT DESCRIBES THE ACTION, LISTS THE SPECIES AND HABITATS THAT WOULD BE AFFECTED AND PROVIDES A PLAN FOR MITIGATING THE HARMFUL EFFECTS OF THAT PROJECT ON THE SPECIES AND THOSE HABITATS TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PRACTICABLE. HABITAT CONSERVATION PLANS CAN BE DEVELOPED FOR AN INDIVIDUAL PROJECT ON A SPECIFIC SITE AFFECTING ONE SPECIES, FOR A BROAD ARRAY OF ACTIVITIES AFFECTING MANY DIFFERENT SPECIES OVER A VERY LARGE LANDSCAPE, OR FOR ANYTHING IN BETWEEN. LAND OWNER OR PROJECT DEVELOPERS PREPARE THE HABITAT CONSERVATION PLAN, OR HCP, AND SUBMIT IT TO THE SERVICE FOR REVIEW AND APPROVAL. ITíS AN APPLICANT-DRIVEN PROCESS. THE DRAFT PLAN AND THE ASSOCIATED NEPA ANALYSIS OF THE SERVICEíS PERMIT ACTION ARE THEN SUBJECT TO PUBLIC NOTICE AND COMMENT BEFORE WE MAKE OUR PERMIT DECISION. LET ME STOP HERE TO DEBUNK ONE CLAIM ABOUT HCPS THAT YOU MAY HAVE HEARD OR ACCEPTED AS TRUTH ñ IT DOES NOT TAKE SIX TO NINE YEARS TO GET THROUGH THE HCP PROCESS. SOME VERY LARGE AND COMPLEX HCPS HAVE TAKEN THAT LONG TO ULTIMATELY PERMIT, BUT THESE ARE EXCEPTIONAL CASES THAT SHOULD NOT BE ACCEPTED AS THE NORM, THESE ARE NORMALLY COUNTY-WIDE HCPS COVERING A WIDE VARIETY OF ACTIVITIES, SOMETIMES 100 AND MORE SPECIES. THOSE ARE NOT THE NORM. RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS ARE DISCREET IN NATURE, PARTICULARLY THOSE THAT ARE WELL-SITED AND WELL-DESIGNED SO THAT THE AFFECTS ON LISTED SPECIES ARE LIMITED AND READILY MITIGATED THEY SHOULD GET A PERMIT DECISION IN A MUCH SHORTER TIME FRAME. EVERY PROJECT AND EVERY HCP IS DIFFERENT AND THE AMOUNT OF TIME IT ULTIMATELY TAKES TO GET THE DECISION IS INFLUENCED BY BOTHTHE EXPERIENCE AND KNOWLEDGE OF APPLICANTS AND CONSULTANT, THE SPEED AT WHICH THE CONSERVATION PLAN IS DEVELOPED, LEVEL OF NEPA ANALYSIS REQUIRED, AND STAFF AVAILABILITY FOR BOTH THE APPLICANT AND THE SERVICE. WE WILL DISCUSS ALL OF THESE ISSUES AND OTHERS IN THE BREAKOUT SESSION MIKE FRISS AND I WILL BE LEADING THIS AFTERNOON. PLEASE, DON'T ACCEPT THE NOTION THAT THE HCP PROCESS TAKES SO MUCH TIME THAT IT IS NOT A VIABLE MEANS OF ESA COMPLIANCE FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS. IF THE ENVIRONMENTALLY SMART THING TO DO IS TO LOCATE YOUR PROJECT ON PRIVATE LANDS WHERE YOU HAVE FEW AND MANAGEABLE IMPACTS TO LISTED SPECIES, THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE WANTS YOU TO DO SO AND WE ARE WORKING TO ENSURE THE HCP PROCESS DOES NOT DISCOURAGE YOU FROM MAKING THAT SMART CITING DECISION. THE SERVICE IS WORKING AGGRESSIVELY ON A NUMBER OF OTHER FRONTS TO HELP GET GOOD, ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS APPROVED AND OPERATIONAL. IN THE SHORT-TERM, WE ARE FOCUSING ON EARLY COORDINATION OF PROJECTS WITH DEVELOPERS AND AFFECTED AGENCIES, BUILDING A DEDICATED RENEWABLE ENERGYSTAFF, EDUCATING AND TRAINING INDUSTRY AND THE CONSULTANT COMMUNITY ON OUR RESOURCE ISSUES AND ESA COMPLIANCE PROCEDURES, AND ESTABLISHING GOOD COMMUNICATIONS AND EFFECTIVE MECHANISMS FOR PROJECT TRACKING AND PROBLEM SOLVING. OUR MOST INTENSE WORK AREA TO DATE HAS BEEN IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA. THROUGH AN MOU WITH THE STATE, WE HAVE ESTABLISHED AN INTERAGENCY POLICY GROUP THAT MEETS MONTHLY AND OUR INTERAGENCY RENEWABLE ENERGY ACTION TEAM THAT MEETS WEEKLY TO SET PRIORITIES, ENSURE GOOD COORDINATION AMONG STATE AND FEDERAL AGENCIES, SOLVE PROBLEMS, AND OTHERWISE FACILITATE TIMELY REVIEW REGULATORY DECISIONS OF BOTH STATE AND FEDERAL AGENCIES. THERE WILL BE A DISCUSSION OF THAT APPROACH THIS AFTERNOON AT THE PLENARY AND IT MAY BE A MODEL WE CAN APPLY ELSEWHERE. THE SERVICE IS CONSTANTLY CHALLENGED TO MAINTAIN THE FIELD STAFF THAT WE NEED TO ADEQUATELY SUPPORT THE SECTION 7 CONSULTATIONS AND HCP DEVELOPMENT. BEGINNING WITH FISCAL YEAR 10 BUDGET REQUEST, WE MADE THIS A PRIORITY TO OBTAIN THE FUNDING AND THE STAFF NEEDED TO ESTABLISH DEDICATED TEAMS FOR REVIEW AND COORDINATION OF RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS. IN OUR EXPERIENCE, NOTHING WORKS BETTER AT GETTING A GOOD OUTCOME IN A TIMELY MANNER THAN HAVING AN EXPERIENCED AND DEDICATED BIOLOGIST AVAILABLE ON OUR END OF THE PHONE TO PROVIDE ADVICE ON PROJECT DESIGN AND MITIGATION AND HELP YOU THROUGH THE REVIEW PROCESS. IN THE LONGER-TERM WE ARE WORKING WITH STATES, INDUSTRY, AND THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY TO SUPPORT REGIONAL HCPS THAT COVER RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS OVER LARGE LANDSCAPES. THE DESERT RENEWABLE ENERGY CONSERVATION PLAN, THE WHOPPING CRANE HCP IN THE GREAT PLAINS STATES, AND THE MULTI-STATE INDIANA BAT HCP IN THE UPPER MIDWEST ARE ALL EXAMPLES OF ONGOING EFFORTS TO ANTICIPATE THE IMPACT OF RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS ON LISTED SPECIES, DESIGN EFFECTIVE MITIGATION STRATEGIES AT LANDSCAPE SCALES, AND PROVIDE REGULATORY MECHANISMS THAT DEVELOPERS CAN OPT INTO TO FACILITATE ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND PROJECT DESIGN AND APPROVAL. WE ARE ALSO PURSUING VEHICLES TO MAKE MITIGATION PLANNING EASIER, MORE EFFECTIVE AND MORE LANDSCAPE-FOCUSED. AS I SAID AT THE OUTSET, THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT IS A POWERFUL LAW BUT ALSO ONE THAT PROVIDES MANY OPPORTUNITIES TO ADAPT TO CHANGING SOCIETAL NEEDS. THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE IS WORKING VERY HARD TO ADAPT ITS ADMINISTRATION OF THE ESA TO THE RAPID GROWTH OF RENEWABLE ENERGY INDUSTRY TO ACHIEVE EFFECTIVE CONSULTATION WHILE ALSO SUPPORTING DEVELOPMENT OF CLEAN ENERGY AND CLEAN ENERGY JOBS. MIKE FRISS AND I WILL LEAD A BREAKOUT SESSION THIS AFTERNOON TO DISCUSS THESE EFFORTS IN MORE DEPTH, PARTICULARLY AS THEY RELATE TO PROJECTS ON PRIVATE LAND. WE VIEW THIS AS A PARTNERSHIP EFFORT WITH OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES, STATES, INDUSTRY, THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY, AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS, AND WE WELCOME ALL SUGGESTIONS ON HOW WE CAN DO OUR JOB MORE EFFECTIVELY. SO WE LOOK FORWARD ON TALKING TO YOU THERE, THANK YOU.  

THANK YOU GARY. BRIAN.

GOOD MORNING, I AM BRIAN ARROYO, I AM THE ASSISTANT DIRECTOR FOR FISHERIES AND HABITAT CONSERVATION AT FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICES. I WANT TO SHARE A VERY BROAD HIGHLIGHTS OF WHAT WE RELEASED YESTERDAY, OUR DRAFT GUIDELINES FOR WIND POWER ENERGY. THE SECRETARY OF INTERIOR FORMED A WIND TURBINES GUIDELINES ADVISORY COMMITTEE. THAT COMMITTEE PREPARED A SET OF RECOMMENDATIONS TO HELP US THROUGH THE DEVELOPMENT OF THESE GUIDELINES. I WANT TO TAKE A FEW SECONDS TO THANK AND ACKNOWLEDGE THE FAC GROUP. THEY DID TWO AND AHALF YEARS OF VERY HARD WORK ñ PROVIDED A VERY COMPLEX AND YET VERY LOGICAL IN TERMS OF HAVING A PROGRESSION OF STEPS ON HOW TO BEGIN WITH THE PRE-CONSTRUCTION PROCESS, GOING THROUGH THE CONSTRUCTION PROCESS AND THEN CONTINUE TO THE POST CONSTRUCTION AND HAVE A GOOD ROBUST MONITORING EFFORT SO WE CAN CONTINUE TO LEARN ABOUT THE IMPACTS OF THOSE FACILITIES. THE COMMITTEE SUBMITTED THEIR RECOMMENDATIONS ON MARCH 4, 2010. AT THAT POINT, THE SERVICE ENGAGED OUR BEST AND BRIGHTEST, FOLKS IN THE REGIONS AND THE FIELD THAT EVERY DAY DEAL WITH THESE ISSUES AND HAVE DEVELOPED INNOVATIVE WAYS OF REVIEWING PROJECTS AND COMING UP WITH SOLUTIONS THAT ARE BOTH PROTECTIVE OF RESOURCES AND FACILITATE THE DEVELOPMENT OF ENERGY PROJECTS. NOW, THAT IS WHAT SECRETARY SALAZAR ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY, THOSE DRAFT GUIDELINES. THEY ARE AVAILABLE ON OUR WEB PAGE. THEY WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER VERY SOON AND WE WILL HAVE A 90-DAY COMMENT PERIOD ON THAT DOCUMENT. THAT IS JUST THE ENTRY POINT TO HAVE THIS GREAT CONVERSATION WE NEED TO HAVE ABOUT HOW WE MOVE FORWARD WITH WIND ENERGY. THIS AFTERNOON WE HAVE A WORKSHOP. IN FACT, IT IS ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR WORKSHOPS. WE HAVE TO DIVIDE IT INTO TWO, SO WE HAVE TWO SESSIONS CONCURRENT WITH DIFFERENT SPEAKERS, BUT ALL COMMENTS WILL BE PUT TOGETHER AND ANALYZED, AND WE REALLY NEED TO HAVE THAT OPEN AND CANDID CONVERSATION. THE GUIDELINES ARE MEANT TO BE AN OVERARCHING WAY FOR DOING RISK ASSESSMENT ABOUT THESE PROJECTS. IN TERMS OF SPECIES AND ALSO HABITATS. THE GUIDELINES, I SEE THEM PERHAPS A PROCEDURAL FRAMEWORK TO NORMALIZE THE PROCESS SO THAT AT LEAST WE HAVE AN UNDERSTANDING AND AN AGREEMENT ABOUT HOW WE ARE GOING TO LOOK AT THESE PROJECTS, WHAT KIND OF INFORMATION IS GOING TO BE GENERATED AT EVERY STAGE OF THE PROCESS SO THAT WE CAN HAVE A COMMON UNDERSTANDING AND A SHARING OF INFORMATION, PARTICULARLY IN THE EARLY STAGES. I CANNOT EMPHASIZE THAT ASPECT OF THE GUIDELINES STRONGLY ENOUGH. THE EARLY CONSULTATIONS, THE EARLY COORDINATION AND EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION IS EXTREMELY CRITICAL BECAUSE AS WE MOVE FORWARD IT IS IMPORTANT THAT WE ARE WITH YOU AND YOU ARE WITH US AT EVERY SINGLE STAGE OF THE PROCESS. IN THE EARLY PROCESS, THE EARLY CONSULTATIONS, IT IS GOING TO BE KEY IN DETERMINING WHICH POTENTIAL IMPACTS ARE GOING TO OCCUR FROM THOSE PROPOSED PROJECTS. AT THAT POINT IT IS EASIER TO REENGINEER, TO RESITE, TO CHANGE THE CONFIGURATION OF THE PROJECT, THEN AFTER THE INDUSTRY HAS MADE INVESTMENTS, HAVE MADE CONTRACTS, LAID OUT LEASES, THOSE SORTS OF THINGS, SO THAT WE DONíT HAVE A PROJECT THATíS ALREADY COOKED. IF WE CAN WORK EARLY ON AND GET THROUGH THOSE POTENTIAL STUMBLING BLOCKS, WE CAN RESOLVE THEM MUCH, MUCH EASIER. THE GUIDELINES ARE BASED, OBVIOUSLY, ON THE FAC RECOMMENDATIONS. THE GUIDELINES THEMSELVES HAVE A TIER APPROACH. WE HAVE FIVE TIERS ñ WE HAVE PRECONSTRUCTION, CONSTRUCTION, POST CONSTRUCTION, MONITORING, AND THEN WE HAVE WHAT WE CALL RESEARCH. THAT LAST TIER IS GOING TO BE VERY IMPORTANT PARTICULARLY IN THE FUTURE AS WE LEARN. WE ARE ALSO GOING TO UNDERSTAND THAT WE HAVE GAPS IN KNOWLEDGE THAT NEED TO BE FILLED WITH ROBUST SCIENCE. THE SCIENTIFIC PROCESS NEEDS TO BE INFORMING OUR DECISIONS ABOUT HOW WE MOVE FORWARD WITH THESE TYPES OF PROJECTS. THE SERVICE OBVIOUSLY IS GOING TO RECOMMEND WE HAVE A ROBUST MONITORING PROGRAM, THAT WE HAVE PRECONSTRUCTION SURVEYS AS BEST WE CAN, BUT THE GUIDELINES ALSO ALLOW FOR PROJECTS THAT ARE ALREADY ONGOING, ALREADY SOMEWHAT PLANNED, PERHAPS IN DIFFERENT STAGES, TO COME IN. THERE ARE ON-RAMPS, AS I CALL THEM, SO THAT WE CAN CONTINUE THAT PROCESS AND THEN CONTINUE TO LEARN AS THOSE PROJECTS ARE IMPLEMENTED. PARTICULARLY IN THE UPPER ECHELON SIDE THAT IS AN AREA THAT IS ROBUST WITH A LOT OF INFORMATION, BUT IT IS ALSO A LOT OF GAPS THAT NEED TO BE FILLED. AS WE LEARN, THROUGH IMPLEMENTATION OF THE MONITORING PROTOCOLS, OF THE OPERATIONAL ASPECTS OF THE PROJECTS WE ARE ALSO GOING TO LEARN ABOUT TECHNIQUES THAT WE CAN THEN SHARE MORE BROADLY AND INCORPORATE INTO OUR RISK ASSESSMENT, RISK ANALYSIS AND IMPLEMENTATION MEASURES. THE GUIDELINES ARE VOLUNTARY. WE HAVE TAKEN THAT APPROACH. IT IS AN APPROACH THAT HAS WORKED IN MANY AREAS OF INDUSTRY. I PERSONALLY BELIEVE THAT WE CAN DO A LOT OF CONSERVATION THROUGH VOLUNTARY WORK AND THAT IS ONE ASPECT WE ARE ASKING COMMENTS ABOUT ñ SHOULD THESE CONTINUE TO BE VOLUNTARY. THAT IS AN AREA FOR A LOT OF DISCUSSION AND A LOT OF EXPLORATION AND WE NEED TO SEE WHAT EMERGES FROM THE PUBLIC PROCESS. THE GUIDELINES ALSO CONTAIN LANGUAGE THAT TALKS ABOUT THE SERVICE'S COMMITMENT TO MAKE THESE PROJECTS THAT HAVE GONE THROUGH THIS PROCESS AND THAT CONTINUE TO BE IMPLEMENTED IN THE WAY THAT WE HAVE AGREED UPON TO HAVE A LOWER ENFORCEMENT PRIORITY, AND THAT IS SOMETHING THAT IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT BECAUSE AS WE LEARN, WE ARE ALSO GOING TO BE ABLE TO MINIMIZE AND AVOID IMPACT THROUGH THAT PROCESS. SO THAT IS ANOTHER ASPECT WE ARE REALLY INTERESTED IN COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE PUBLIC AS WE GO THROUGH OUR PUBLIC PROCESS. WE ARE SHORT ON TIME AND SO, WHAT I AM GOING TO TRY TO DO IS TRY TO SUMMARIZE KIND OF WHAT I SEE THE FUTURE OF THESE GUIDELINES AND HOW THEY HAVE AN INTERSECTION WITH OUR EAGLE GUIDELINES AND THE BLM INSTRUCTIONAL MEMOS. THEY ARE ALL PART OF A PACKAGE. WE CANNOT LOOK AT ANY OF THESE THINGS IN ISOLATION, OTHERWISE WE ARE GOING TO MISS THE BIG PICTURE OF HOW THE DEPARTMENT HAS PUT TOGETHER A SET OF PRIORITIES, SET OF FRAMEWORKS, SO THAT WE CAN GO THROUGH THE PROCESS IN A MOST EXPEDITIOUS MANNER AND IN AN EFFICIENT WAY SO WE ARE NOT ASKING THE SAME QUESTION THREE OR FOUR DIFFERENT TIMES, OR WORSE HAVE NUANCES TO THOSE QUESTIONS. WE HAVE A BASELINE THAT IS GOING TO BE COMMON. WE WILL HAVE THEN AN ABILITY TO SHARE INFORMATION. THE IMPORTANT PART HERE IS THAT WE ARE GOING TO BE ENGAGED WITH YOU AND LEVERAGE OUR CAPABILITY, OUR KNOWLEDGE, OUR EXPERIENCES WITH WHAT YOU BRING TO THE TABLE. INDUSTRY HAS A LOT OF INFORMATION THAT WE CAN AVAIL OURSELVES, AND EXEPERTISE. ALSO THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY HAS DONE A LOT OF RESEARCH, HAS DONE A LOT OF THINKING ABOUT THIS. IT IS IMPORTANT THAT WE HAVE THIS INTERSECTION OF THE THREE ANGLES HERE AND HAVE A VERY ROBUST PROCESS TO MOVE FORWARD INTO RENEWABLE ENERGY FUTURES WHILE CONSERVING OUR NATURAL RESOURCES. WITH THAT, I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING A LOT OF YOU AT THE SESSION THIS AFTERNOON. WE CAN GET TO A LOT OF DETAIL AND QUESTIONS AND BACK AND FORTH AND I REALLY WANT TO HAVE GOOD EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION. SO WITH THAT, I AM DONE.

THANKS, BRIAN. PAUL?

THANK YOU, DAVID. WELCOME EVERYONE TO THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR. AFTER DECADES OF HARD WORK AND CONSERVATION, BALD EAGLES WERE REMOVED FROM THE FEDERAL LIST OF ENDANGERED SPECIES IN AUGUST OF 2007. I REMEMBER THAT DAY, MY COLLEAGUE LAUGHING, STANDING NEXT TO ME ON THE STEPS OF THE JEFFERSON MEMORIAL WITH THEN SENATOR KEMPTHORN AND RELEASING AN EAGLE THAT, BY THE WAY, WHACKED ME IN THE HEAD AS IT WAS RELEASED. BUT IT WAS A GREAT DAY OF CELEBRATION. PROBABLY THE HOTTEST DAY I CAN REMEMBER IN THE BRIGHT SUN. BUT IT WAS ONE OF THOSE DAYS OF CELEBRATION THAT WILL LIVE WITH ME FOREVER. HOWEVER, BALD EAGLES AND GOLDEN EAGLES REMAIN PROTECTED ON THE BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLE PROTECTION ACT AND THE MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT. IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER THE IMPACT OF OUR ACTIVITIES AND THE DEVELOPMENTS ON THE OVER 1000 SPECIES OF MIGRATORY BIRDS AND SPECIFICALLY REVIEW THE PROHIBITIONS THAT EXIST AND HAVE BEEN IN PLACE UNDER THESE WILDLIFE STATUTES FOR DECADES. MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT AND THE EAGLE ACT. THE USE OF AVIAN PROTECTION PLANS HAS BEEN SUCCESSFULLY PIONEERED BY SOME SECTORS LIKE POWER LINE INDUSTRY THROUGH THE AVIAN POWER LIVE INTERACTION COMMITTEE THAT HAS BEEN COORDINATED BY THE EDISON ELECTRIC INSTITUTE. TO ADDRESS THE PROBLEMS OF BIRDS COLLIDING WITH STRUCTURES IN THE ABSENCE OF REGULATION THAT WOULD AUTHORIZE THAT TAKE UNDER THE MIGRATORY TREATY ACT. MY REMARKS TODAY THOUGH WILL FOCUS MORE ON THE NEW DEVELOPMENTS THAT WE HAVE RELATIVE TO THE BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLE ACT AND RENEWABLE ENERGY. THE EAGLE ACT, ORIGINALLY PASSED IN 1940, PROVIDES FOR THE PROTECTION OF BALD EAGLES AND GOLDEN EAGLES AS AMENDED IN 1962, BY PROHIBITING THE TAKE OF ANY BALD OR GOLDEN EAGLE, ALIVE OR DEAD, INCLUDING ANY PART, NEST, OR EGG, UNLESS AUTHORIZED BY A PERMIT. TAKE INCLUDES TO PURSUE, SHOOT, SHOOT AT, POISON, WOUND, KILL, CAPTURE, TRAP, COLLECT, DESTROY, MOLEST, OR DISTURB WHETHER THAT WAS THE INTENTION OF THE ACTIVITY. LIKE THE MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT, THE ORIGINAL EAGLE ACT AND THE SUBSEQUENT AMENDMENTS PROVIDE FOR CIVIL AND CRIMINAL PENALTIES FOR VIOLATING THOSE PROVISIONS. WHEN BALD EAGLES WERE LISTED UNDER THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT, A PERMIT WAS AVAILABLE TO TAKE EAGLES INCIDENTAL TO AN OTHERWISE LAWFUL ACTIVITY. BUT ON THAT DAY IN AUGUST, WHEN WE CELEBRATED THE RELEASE OF THAT EAGLE AND THE REMOVAL OF IT FROM THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT, THAT OPPORTUNITY FOR A PERMIT WAS ALSO REMOVED. CURRENTLY, AND FOR THE DECADES SINCE 1940, THERE HAS BEEN NO WAY FOR US, NO PROVISION, NO REGULATION, BY WHICH WE COULD ISSUE PERMITS FOR TAKE UNDER THE EAGLE ACT FOR THOSE ACTIVITIES THAT WE ARE CONCERNED ABOUT IN THIS ROOM TODAY THOSE THAT ARE OTHERWISE INCIDENTLY OR UNINTENTIONALLY OCCURRING RELATIVE TO A SPECIES OF EAGLE. BUT IN SEPTEMBER OF 2009, WITH THE HELP OF AND EFFORTS OF MANY OF FOLKS IN THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE ON MY STAFF IN PARTICULAR, THE SERVICE ISSUED REGULATIONS AUTHORIZING TWO NEW PERMITS FOR TAKING EAGLES, INCIDENTAL TO THE OTHERWISE LAWFUL ACTIVITIES. THE FINAL RULE ON THESE TWO NEW PERMIT REGULATIONS ALLOWS FOR THE TAKE OF EAGLES UNDER THE ACT PROVIDED THAT DOING SO IS COMPATIBLE WITH THE PRESERVATION OF THE TWO SPECIES. THIS REGULATION HAS PROVIDED A FRAMEWORK AND A PROCESS FOR A MUCH NEEDED AUTHORIZATION AND CERTAINTY IN MANY ACTIVITIES. IN OTHER WORDS, IT PROVIDES A WAY TO COMPLY WITH THE EAGLE OR THE EAGLE THAT WE HAVE NOT HAD, ALLOWING FOR COMPATIBLE DEVELOPMENT TO PROGRESS WHILE ENSURING THE PRESERVATION OF THESE MAGNIFICENT BUT VULNERABLE SPECIES. AFTER EXTENSIVE PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT DURING THAT PROPOSED RULE AND THE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT FOR THOSE REGULATIONS, THE STATUTORY STANDARD HAS BEEN INTERPRETED TO MEAN CONSISTENT WITH THE GOAL OF A STABLE OR INCREASING BREEDING POPULATION. POPULATION INFORMATION FOR BOTH EAGLE POPULATIONS WILL GUIDE THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE IN DETERMINING HOW MANY PERMITS MAY BE ISSUED IN ANY PARTICULAR LOCALITY. THE LAWS AND REGULATIONS GIVE PRIORITY TO NATIVE AMERICANS, FOR THEIR NEEDS FOR CULTURAL AND RELIGIOUS PURPOSES, IF TAKE IS NECESSARY FOR THOSE TRADITIONAL CEREMONIES. OUR MANAGEMENT OBJECTIVE IS TO ENSURE AUTHORIZE ACTIONS DO NOT RESULT IN A DECLINE IN BREEDING POPULATIONS OF EITHER OF THESE SPECIES. THE DRAFT EAGLE CONSERVATION PLAN GUIDANCE, THAT WAS RELEASED YESTERDAY, AND WILL BE THE SUBJECT OF ONE OF THE BREAKOUT SESSIONS THIS AFTERNOON, WILL INTERPRET AND CLARIFIED PERMIT REQUIREMENTS IN THE REGULATIONS AND IN THE BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLE PROTECTION ACT, AND INDEED WE BELIEVE PROVIDE A ROAD MAP FOR THE DEVELOPMENT FOR EAGLE CONSERVATION PLANS AND ULTIMATELY PERMITS. THE BEST WAY, AS BRIAN INDICATED, THE BEST WAY TO AVOID TAKING AND THE BEST WAY TO DEAL WITH THESE ISSUES IS TO PAY CLOSE ATTENTION TO THE CITING OF WIND TURBINES. PROPER CITING IS CRITICAL AND OUR COLLECTIVE SUCCESS IN PROVIDING RENEWABLE ENERGY AND THE PRESERVATION OF OUR WILDLIFE. AS I MENTIONED, THE SERVICE ANNOUNCED THE AVAILABILITY OF THE DRAFT EAGLE CONSERVATION PLAN GUIDANCE YESTERDAY. WE ARE REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THE PUBLIC INPUT ON THIS AND HOPE THAT IT WILL GUIDE US THROUGH SOME CHALLENGING TIMES AHEAD FOR US. I AM GOING TO REITERATE THE THANKS DAN INDICATED EARLIER ñ THANKS TO BRIAN MILSAP AND HIS TECHNICAL TEAM FOR WORKING INCREDIBLY LONG AND HARD OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF MONTHS WITH INCREDIBLY SHORT DEADLINES TO GET TO THIS POINT. I THANK MATT HOGAN FOR LEADING THE MANAGEMENT TEAM ACROSS THE COUNTRY, BECAUSE WE HAD ISSUES TO DEAL WITH RELATIVE TO BALD EAGLES IN ONE PART OF THE COUNTRY AND GOLDEN EAGLES IN ANOTHER. WHILE THEY MAY LOOK ALIKE, THEY DON'T ACT ALIKE. THE HABITATS AND NOT THE SAME, THE ISSUES ARE NOT THE SAME AND PEOPLE HAVE TO REALLY BE THOUGHTFUL ABOUT HOW WE PRESENT THESE GUIDELINES. I WOULD LIKE TO THANK JEROME FORD, MY DEPUTY, AND ALISHA KING IN PARTICULAR, FOR THE WORK THAT THEY HAVE DONE AND OTHERS ON THE STAFF WHO HAVE REALLY HELPED A LOT OVER THE PAST SEVERAL MONTHS. THE GUIDANCE INTERPRETS AND CLARIFIES THE PERMIT REQUIREMENTS BUT DOES NOT IMPOSE ANY BINDING REQUIREMENTS BEYOND THOSE THAT WERE ALREADY ESTABLISHED IN 2009 UNDER THAT REGULATION. THE GUIDANCE PROVIDES AN OUTLINE OR A TEMPLATE FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF AN EAGLE CONSERVATION PLAN, INCLUDING SUGGESTIONS FOR EMPLOYING AN ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT APPROACH. AN ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT IS CRITICAL, AS WE NEED MORE AND MORE INFORMATION TO REALLY BALANCE THESE COMPETING INTERESTS OF EAGLES AND WILDLIFE IN GENERAL AND RENEWABLE ENERGY. THE GUIDANCE DOVETAILS WITH THE WIND POWER GUIDELINES THAT BRIAN JUST MENTIONED AND IT CALLS FOR A STAGED APPROACH A STAGE APPROACH FOR THE EARLY SITE ASSESSMENT FOR THE PRESENCE OF EAGLES, SITE-SPECIFIC SURVEYS FOR EAGLES, ESTIMATING POTENTIAL EAGLE FATALITIES, MITIGATING POTENTIAL EAGLE FATALITIES AND HABITAT DISRUPTIONS THROUGH ON-SITE OR COMPENSATORY MITIGATION. THE GUIDANCE RECOMMENDS PROJECT PROPONENTS DETERMINE WHICH CATEGORY IS THE PLANNED PROJECT FALLS INTO A HIGH RISK CATEGORY FOR EAGLES WHERE THERE IS LITTLE OPPORTUNITY TO MINIMIZE THE EFFECTS, A MODERATE RISK TO EAGLES, BUT WHERE WE THINK THERE IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO MINIMIZE AND COMPENSATE FOR THOSE EFFECTS, AND THIRD, MINIMAL RISK TO EAGLES. SO WE LOOK FORWARD TO WORKING WITH THE INDUSTRY ON PROJECT PROPONENTS TO MAKE THE BEST POSSIBLE USE OF THESE LAWS, REGULATIONS AND IMPLEMENTING GUIDANCE WE HAVE JUST ISSUED AND WE REALLY LOOK FORWARD TO HEARING FROM YOU DURING THIS SESSION OR PROBABLY AND I AM SURE THE MOST POPULAR SESSION, THE BREAK OUT SHORTLY THAT WILL BE DOWN IN THE RACHEL CARSON ROOM WHICH WILL BE REALLY HARD FOR YOU ALL TO FIND, BUT IT IS DOWN IN OUR BASEMENT LEFT OF THE SERVING LINE IN THE CAFETERIA. AND WE HOPE TO SEE A BUNCH OF YOU THERE AND TO HEAR FROM YOU. THANKS.  

THANK YOU VERY MUCH, PAUL. LET'S HAVE A LITTLE BIT OF A ROUNDTABLE FOR THE NEXT 30 MINUTES. I WILL START SOME OF THE QUESTIONS OFF AND WE WILL HAVE A MICROPHONE I THINK CIRCULATING FOR YOU TO ASK SOME QUESTIONS. IT SEEMS AS THOUGH THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, THE PRESENTATIONS WILL BE REALLY POPULAR. NOT ALL OF YOU WILL BE ABLE TO GO TO THE BLM DISCUSSION BREAKOUT GROUP. LET ME ASK A COUPLE OF QUESTIONS OF BOB AND TED COMING OUT OF THE INSTRUCTIONAL MEMORANDA THAT WERE RELEASED YESTERDAY. CAN YOU GIVE US A LITTLE MORE FLAVOR OF THIS PRE-APPLICATION PROCESS THAT YOU ARE GOING TO BE EXPECTING DEVELOPERS TO GO THROUGH? AND WILL IT REALLY BE MEANINGFUL IN TERMS OF POTENTIALLY TURNING BACK PROJECTS AT THAT VERY EARLY PRELIMINARY STAGE THAT DON'T MAKE SENSE? WHERE IS THE BEEF IN THAT PROCESS, IF YOU WILL?

I WILL TAKE A FIRST SHOT AT IT AND BOB, CORRECT ME AS I GO ASTRAY. CERTAINLY, THE INTENT THERE IS TO MAKE IT AS MEANINGFUL AS POSSIBLE. THE PRE-APPLICATION PROCESS, AS I NOTED, IT IS A SPARE PROVISION IN THE BLM REGULATIONS. THE REALLY WELL FORMED AND SOPHISTICATED APPLICATIONS ARETHE RESULT OF A VIGOROUS PRE- APPLICATION PROCESS. THIS IS A COMPLEX UNDERTAKING AND YOU CANíT JUST, IF YOU ARE AN APPLICANT, COME UP WITH AN ON YOUR OWN AND DROPPED IF OFF AT THE BLMíS DOORSTEP AND EXPECTED THAT ITíS ALL JUST GOING TO FALL INTO PLACE. CERTAINLY THESE PROJECTS INVOLVE AN ARRAY OF ANALYTICAL RESOURCES, NOT JUST FOR THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT BUT FOR OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES WITH JURISDICTION AND EXPERTISE ñ AS WEíVE FROM HEARD FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE AN ARRAY OF THREATENED AND ENDANGERED SPECIES ISSUES, BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLES ISSUES, AND THAT SCRATCHES THE SURFACE, AND I COULD GO ON WITH A LITANY WHICH REALLY DOES DEPEND ON IT VERY SITE-SPECIFIC WAY OF THE APPROPRIATE ANALYSIS ñ AND MAKE SURE WEíVE IDENTIFIED WHAT STUDIES ARE NEEDED? WHAT IS THE INCOMPLETE AND UNAVAILABLE INFORMATION THAT NEEDS TO BE COLLECTED TO ALLOW THIS PROJECT TO WORK ITS WAY THROUGH NEPA PROCESS TO A RECORD OF DECISION OR TO A FINDING OF NO SIGNIFICANT IMPACT, IF THATíS THE CASE. PART OF THAT PROCESS IS LOOKING AT THE RANGE OF CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE APPLICANT WHAT ARE THEIR INTERESTS, WHAT ARE THEIR PARAMETERS, THEIR CONSTRAINTS? WHAT SITES DID THEY LOOK AT? HOW DO THEY COME TO THEIR PREFERRED LOCATION ON THE PUBLIC LANDS? THAT IS A FULL RANGE. THERE ARE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENTS OUT ON THE STREET AND DRAFTED TALKING ABOUT WELL WE LOOKED AT 24 DIFFERENT SITES. THAT HAS TO BE BOILED DOWN INTO A REASONABLE RANGE. PART OF THE NEPA PROCESS IS IDENTIFYING ALTERNATIVESTHAT YOU CAN ELIMINATE FROM DETAILED ANALYSIS AND REALLY FIGURE OUT WHAT ARE THE ONES THAT WARRANT THE CONSIDERATION BY THE ULTIMATE DECISION MAKERS THE STATE DIRECTOR, DIRECTOR OF BLM.  

THANK YOU, AND THANKS TED. I THINK THE PRE-APPLICATION CONFERENCE IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS THAT THE PROPONENT CAN DO IN THE ENTIRE NEPA PROCESS, THE ENTIRE PROJECT PLANNING PROCESS, BECAUSE THERE IS A LOT OF INFORMATION ALREADY WELL KNOWN ABOUT SOME OF THE AREAS WHERE PROJECTS ARE BEING PROPOSED. AND WE HAVE PUT TOGETHER AS PART OF OUR INSTRUCTIONAL MEMORANDA A SET OF CRITERIA THAT WE WILL BE USING TO SCREEN THESE APPLICATIONS. BUT AS TED POINTS OUT THERE ARE ALTERNATIVES THAT COULD BE TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION BY A PROPONENT. AND THE PURPOSE OF HAVING THESE PREAPPLICATION CONFERENCES ARE TO LOOK AT THE ALTERNATIVES THERE BUT ALSO TO SHARE INFORMATION BOTH THE INFORMATION COMES FROM THE PROPONENTS TO THE AGENCIES, AND THEN FROM THE AGENCIES TO THE PROPONENT. SO WE ARE WORKING CLOSER TOGETHER TO PUT TOGETHER A PROJECT A PROJECT THAT HAS THE BEST CHANCE OF MOVING FORWARD. BECAUSE ONE THING WE DO NOT WANT IS FOR A PROJECT PROPONENT TO WASTE A LOT OF MONEY ON A PROJECT THAT HAS ABSOLUTELY NO CHANCE OF BEING APPROVED BY A REGULATORY AGENCY OR THE LAND MANAGEMENT AGENCY. I THINK IT IS PROBABLY ONE OF THE MORE IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF SOME OF THE CHANGES WEíVE MADE.  

JUST TO FOLLOW UP. AS A PRACTICAL MATTER, IF YOU HAVE SOME PROJECT PROPONENTS COMING IN FOR PRE-APPLICATION MEETINGS AND PROJECTS A LOOKS LIKE IT HAS SOME SIGNIFICANT POTENTIAL PROBLEMS AND PROJECT B LOOKS LIKE IT HAS MUCH MORE OF A CLEAR PATH, WILL YOU TELL THAT TO THE APPLICANTS? DOES THAT AFFECT YOUR RESOURCE ALLOCATION IN TERMS OF WHAT BLM WILL WORK ON? WHAT IS THE PRACTICAL IMPACT OF THAT EARLY ASSESSMENT BY BLM OF THE RELATIVE POTENTIAL PATHWAYS FOR PROJECTS?

WELL YOU KNOW ULTIMATELY THE PROJECT ITSELF IS GOING TO BE RECOMMENDED BY THE PROPONENT AND BASED UPON A NUMBER OF FACTORS THAT THEY HAVE TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT IN PUTTING TOGETHER SUCH A PLAN. NONETHELESS, WE DO HAVE FAMILIARITY WITH ALL OF OUR LAND USE PLANS. WE KNOW WHERE THERE IS A LIKELIHOOD THAT PUBLIC LANDS ARE APPROPRIATE FOR SUCH A PROPOSAL. WE CERTAINLY WILL BE IN BETTER SHAPE ONCE THE PROGRAMMATIC EIS IS COMPLETED AND APPROVED FOR THE 24 SOLAR STUDY ENERGY AREAS. WHERE WE COULD MOVE SOME OF THE PROJECTS TOWARD, BECAUSE WE WOULD KNOW AT THAT POINT IN TIME WHERE THERE IS A GREATER CHANCE OF SUCCESS OR WHERE THESE PROJECTS COULD BE PLACED, AND WOULD BE THE RIGHT LOCATION.

FINALLY, IN TERMS OF THE BLM INSTRUCTIONAL MEMORANDA THAT CAME OUT YESTERDAY, YOU HAVE GOT SOME DUE DILIGENCE REQUIREMENTS. CAN YOU GIVE A SHORT SYNOPSIS OF WHAT THOSE ARE AND EXPLAIN THEIR RELEVANCE AND MATERIALITY?

ONE OF THE CHALLENGES WE FACE IN 2009 WHERE WE STARTED GIVING THE FOCUS THAT SOLAR PROJECT APPLICATIONS DESERVED WAS THAT WE HAVE AN AWFUL LOT OF APPLICATIONS IN FRONT OF US WHERE THERE HAD BEEN VERY LITTLE ACTION TAKEN BY THE PROPONENT ITSELF TO AFFECT THOSE APPLICATIONS. UNDER THE CURRENT PROCESS, OR UNDER THE PROCESS WE WERE USING AT THE TIME, AN APPLICATION THAT WAS FILED ON SPECIFIC PUBLIC LANDS, PRETTY MUCH IT WAS FIRST PLACE AND TIME. BY THAT I MEAN WHOEVER WAS THE FIRST TO FILE IN SPECIFIC AREAS OF PUBLIC LAND PRETTY MUCH TIED UP THAT LAND UNTIL THEY HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO PERFECT THAT APPLICATION OR UNTIL BLM A DECISION ON THAT RIGHT OF WAY APPLICATION. SO WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED AND IS APPROPRIATE WE ARE MOVING FORWARD REQUIRING THAT ANY APPLICANT THAT HAS FOUND A RIGHT OF WAY APPLICATION FOR THE USE OF PUBLIC LANDS, IN THIS CASE, FOR SOLAR PROJECTS, TO PERFECT THAT APPLICATION IN A TIMELY MANNER, TO DEMONSTRATE THEIR COMMITMENT TO MOVING FORWARD WITH THAT PROJECT, TO ACTUALLY SPENDING SOME MONEY ON THE ANALYSIS THATíS GOING TO BE REQUIRED, WORKING WITH THE STAKEHOLDERS, WORKING WITH THE AGENCIES INVOLVED TO MOVE FORWARD WITH THE SCOPING AND THE NEPA ANALYSIS SO THAT WE CAN, YOU KNOW, ONCE AGAIN FOCUS OUR ENERGIES ON THOSE PROJECTS THAT ARE SERIOUS, THAT MERIT OUR ATTENTION AND HAVE THE GREATEST CHANCE OF SUCCESS OF BEING BUILT ON THESE PUBLIC LANDS.  

THANK YOU. LET ME ASK A COUPLE OF QUESTIONS OF OUR FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE FRIENDS AND THEN OPEN IT UP A LITTLE BIT. GARY, PEOPLE WERE RECORDING YOUR WORDS WHEN YOU SAID IT DOES NOT TAKE SIX-NINE YEARS TO DO SECTION 10 HABITAT CONSERVATION PLANS. CAN YOU GIVE A LITTLE FLAVOR, ARE THERE, OF THE LEVEL OF ACTIVITY, SAY, IN CALIFORNIA ON HCPS FOR SPECIFIC PROJECTS, OR IS THIS AN ASPIRATIONAL GOAL OR ARE THINGS HAPPENING ON THE GROUND THAT GIVE YOU SOME VIEWS OR SOME BASIS FOR YOUR STATEMENT?

WE HEAR ON A PRETTY REGULAR BASIS ABOUT CONCERN ABOUT WHETHER HCPS ARE IN FACT A VIABLE MEANS OF ESA COMPLIANCE. RIGHT NOW WITH RECOVERY ACT FUNDS PROVIDING GREATER INCENTIVES FOR PROJECTS, MOVING TO CONSTRUCTION OPERATIONS IN A SHORT TIME PERIODS, CLEARLY THE LENGTH OF TIME IT TAKES TO DEVELOP A CONSERVATION PLAN, TO GO THROUGH NEPA COMPLIANCE ARE CONCERNS. THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE DOES NOT HAVE UNLIMITED STAFF AND RESOURCES THAT CAN HELP APPLICANTS AT EVERY STEP ALONG THE WAY. WE ARE WORKING TO FIND WAYS TO FACILITATE DEVELOPMENT OF RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS ON GOOD SITES, ON PRIVATE LANDS WHERE THE IMPACTS TO LISTED SPECIES WOULD BE SMALL IN COMPARISON WITH ALTERNATIVE SITES THAT MIGHT HAVE A FEDERAL CONNECTION. WE ARE DOING THINGS LIKE WORKING TO DEVELOP THE DESERT RESOURCE RENEWABLE ENERGY CONSERVATION PLAN AS A MODEL, A TEMPLATE FOR A REGIONAL APPROACH THAT DEVELOPERS CAN OPT INTO. THESE THINGS ARE GOING TO TAKE TIME. WE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LOOK BEYOND THE HORIZON OF THE RECOVERY ACT. BUT THIS IS GOING TO BE AN INDUSTRY THAT IS GOING TO BE AFFECTING OUR LANDSCAPE AND BE SOMETHING WE ARE GOING TO WANT TO SUPPORT FOR THE LONG TERM. SO WE WANT TO ENSURE THAT PROJECTS CAN GET CITED IN THE BEST PLACES REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THEYíRE ON PRIVATE LANDS OR PUBLIC LANDS AND THAT A SECTION 10 PERMIT IS NOT SOMETHING THAT ONE NEEDS TO SHY AWAY FROM, THAT WE CAN WORK WITH DEVELOPERS TO MAKE THAT A VIABLE OPTION AS WELL.  

MAYBE I COULD FOLLOW UP WITH A QUESTION FOR ANY OF YOU TO ANSWER, FROM DAN ON DOWN. MANY OF YOU EMPHASIZED THE IMPORTANCE OF THINKING ABOUT LANDSCAPE LEVEL POPULATION HEALTH AND WANTING TO ENSURE THAT THE PROJECT-BY-PROJECT ANALYSIS DOESNíT DO HARM TO THE OVERALL POPULATION STRENGTHS. IT SEEMS LIKE BIG PICTURE MITIGATION OPPORTUNITIES, BIG LANDSCAPE MITIGATION OPPORTUNITIES, MAY PROVIDE AN AVENUE FOR INDIVIDUAL PROJECTS OWNERS TO CONTRIBUT TO STRONGHOLDS FOR VARIOUS SPECIES. IMAGINE A CHICKEN AND EGG ISSUE IN TERMS OF GETTING THOSE UNDER WAY. CAN YOU ALL GIVE A SENSE OF WHAT YOU SEE AS A WAY FORWARD HERE AND WHAT YOU WOULD WHAT ADVICE YOU WOULD GIVE TO STAKEHOLDERS OF ALL TYPES WHETHER CONSERVATION GROUPS, PROPONENTS, OR NOT, TO WORK WITH YOU TO THINK ABOUT BIG PICTURE STRONGHOLDS, MITIGATION OPPORTUNITIES, THAT CAN THEN BE UTILIZED FOR INDIVIDUAL PROJECTS TO HELP THEM GET THROUGH THE PROCESS.  

THANKS, DAVID. I WILL START QUICKLY BY JUST SAYING THAT WE DO BELIEVE THAT LOOKING AT RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT AT LARGER SCALE, AT POPULATION SCALE IS THE WAY THAT WE CAN MOVE FORWARD TOGETHER. I THINK THE BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLE PROTECTION PLAN GUIDANCE THAT WE ARE ISSUING TODAY IS A FIRST STEP IN THAT DIRECTION FOR US TO WORK TOGETHER. IN ORDER TO FUEL THAT KIND OF SUCCESS, WE NEED INFORMATION AT THE POPULATION SCALE. WE CAN'T BE DEALING WITH INDIVIDUAL BIRD MORTALITIES. WE HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THE GOLDEN EAGLE POPULATION AT THE POPULATION SCALE. AND WE ARE ACTIVELY WORKING WITH THE USGS AND OTHERS TO PULL TOGETHER THE SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION SO WE CAN MODEL THOSE POPULATIONS AND BRING THAT KIND OF INFORMATION TO BEAR. ON AN EVEN LARGER SCALE, IN 2010 WITH DAVIDíS SUPPORT AND THE SECRETARY'S SUPPORT WE BEGAN AN INITIATIVE TO ESTABLISH A NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL NETWORK OF LANDSCAPE CONSERVATION COOPERATIVES. THOSE ARE MULTI-PARTNER INITIATIVES TO BUILD SCIENTIFIC CAPACITY THAT WILL ALLOW US TO SEE WITHIN AND ACROSS THESE BROAD REGIONAL LANDSCAPES. I THINK THAT IS SOMETHING I WOULD URGE THE RENEWABLE ENERGY INDUSTRY TO COME ENGAGE WITH AND TO BECOME A PARTNER WITH US IN BUILDING THAT KIND OF CAPACITY, BECAUSE THAT WILL LEAD TO SUCCESS WITH HCP DEVELOPMENT AND IN DEVELOPMENT OF BAT AND AVIAN PROTECTION PLANS THAT CAN COVER THESE BROAD LANDSCAPES.  

ANY OTHER COMMENTS? BRIAN?

I WILL ADD THAT THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE HAS A LONG STORY OF MITIGATION BANKING AND THOSE APPROACHES HAVE BEEN EXTREMELY SUCCESSFUL. MY ADVICE TO PROJECT PROPONENTS IS THAT IF YOU ARE AWARE THAT SOME OF YOUR COLLEAGUES ARE COVERING THE SAME AREA, YOU WILL BE LOOKING AT THE SAME KINDS OF IMPACTS AND THE SAME TYPE OF RESOURCES. PERHAPS I WILL ENCOURAGE YOU TO COOPERATE AT THAT LEVEL, TOO. AND ALSO WITH THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY. ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY ALSO HAS AREAS THAT ARE OF INTEREST IF WE CAN GET THE THREE AREAS TOGETHER AND START THINKING ABOUT HOW DO WE DO LANDSCAPE CONSERVATION, AND MITIGATION, OR INDIVIDUAL LEVEL IMPACTS, OF THIS KIND OF INDUSTRY, COUPLED WITH WHAT DAN MENTIONED ABOUT THE CONSERVATION COOPERATIVES I THINK WE COULD HAVE ECONOMIES OF SCALE, BUT ALSO, WHICH ULTIMATELY THE MOST IMPORTANT THING FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF RESOURCES ASPECT OF THIS IS THAT WE WILL HAVE MORE MEANINGFUL PATCHES OF HABITAT, AREAS THAT ARE GOING TO BE MANAGED AND CONSERVED FOR THE LONGER TERM AND HAVE BETTER RETURN ON OUR INVESTMENT FOR CONSERVATION.  

THANKS, DAVID. I' JUST LIKE TO ADD, FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT DEAL WITH THE ACTS THAT WE DEAL ON A ROUTINE BASIS, PARTICULARLY THE ONES THAT I AM CONCERNED ABOUT, THE MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT AND THE BALD AND GOLDEN EAGLE PROTECTION ACT, IT MAKES IT A BIT OF A CHALLENGE. WE ALL THINK THE CONSERVATION COMMUNITY, THE SCIENCE HAS EVOLVED OVER THIS PAST CENTURY, IN A VERY POSITIVE WAY. THE KINDS OF THINGS YOU MENTIONED, DAN AND DAVID, THE PROBLEM THAT WE HAVE, OR THE CHALLENGE THAT WE HAVE, IS THAT WE ARE WORKING UNDER STATUTES FROM 1918, 1940, IN THE TWO THAT I JUST MENTIONED. SO THE THINKING HAS EVOLVED BUT THE STATUTES MAY NOT GIVE US AS MUCH LEEWAY WE WOULD LIKE TO UNDER THE SCIENCE. IT IS A BIT OF A CHALLENGE AND THATíS WHY I AM SURE YOU ARE ALL FRUSTRATED WITH THE SPEED AT WHICH WE DEVELOP THESE THINGS, BUT ITíS TRYING TO PACKAGE THE 1918 LAWS THAT FOCUSED ON INDIVIDUAL TAKING OF INDIVIDUAL BIRDS INTO A 2011 STRUCTURE AND DEALING IN A SMART WAY ON THE LANDSCAPE. SO I THINK THAT HAS PROBABLY BEEN OUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE TO GET THOSE DOVETAILED.  

AN APPROPRIATE REALITY CHECK BY PAUL. IN THAT REGARD, BECAUSE THESE ARE STRICT LIABILITY STATUTES THAT DON'T ANTICIPATE TAKE. YOUR FINAL QUESTION FROM ME, AND THEN LETíS GET SOME FROM THE AUDIENCE. YOUR GUIDELINES SUGGEST THAT IF THE PROJECT PROPONENTS DO AVIAN PROTECTION PLANS THAT HAVE CERTAIN ELEMENTS TO THEM, THAT THERE WILL BE LONG ARM OF THE LAW WILL PERHAPS BE SHORTER FOR THEM, OR HOWEVER THE METAPHOR WORKS. CAN YOU EXPOUND UPON THAT A LITTLE BIT? IS THAT THE IDEA, THAT THERE IS SOMETHING LIKE A SAFE HARBOR, A SAFER HARBOR, OR WHAT?

YES. THAT IS OBVIOUSLY OUR GOAL, TO PROVIDE AS MUCH CERTAINTY AS WE CAN WITHIN THE LAW. IF THE ACTIVITIES ARE DEALING IN GOOD FAITH IN TRYING TO REACH THE STANDARDS THAT WERE SET DECADES AGO BY THESE LAWS. THAT IS THE TRICK. THERE IS PROBABLY SOMEBODY FROM THE DEPARTMENT JUSTICE IN HERE, AND LAW ENFORCEMENT FOLKS, SO I PROBABLY SHOULD NOT GO TOO MUCH FARTHER. BUT JUST TO SAY THAT WE RECOGNIZE GOOD BEHAVIOR AS BEST WE CAN. WE WANT THROUGH THESE GUIDELINES TO RECOGNIZE AND SORT OF HIGHLIGHT AND PILOT AND STAND UP THOSE COMPANIES, THOSE INDIVIDUALS WHO CAN REACH AS CLOSE TO THIS UNREACHABLE STANDARD AS POSSIBLE.  

GREAT. I THINK WE HAVE A MICROPHONE. IF NOT, I AM HAPPY TO TAKE SOME HANDS AND ANYQUESTIONS FOLKS MAY HAVE. RIGHT DOWN HERE, IN FRONT.  

GOOD MORNING. MY NAME IS LINDA OTERO. I AM NUMBER OF THE FORT MOJAVE INDIAN TRIBE. IíM HERE AS THE DIRECTOR OF THE AHAMAKAV CULTURAL SOCIETY ñ I AM ALSO A MEMBER OF THE TRIBAL COUNCIL FOR FORT MOJAVE. I APPRECIATE THE OPPORTUNITY TO SPEAK RIGHT NOW BECAUSE IíLL ALSO ADDRESS MORE CONCERNS I HAVE DURING THE BREAKOUT SESSIONS WE HAVE. BUT SINCE I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION HERE AS WELL AS YOU CAN FORWARD IT ON TO THE SECRETARY OF INTERIOR AS WELL AS ENERGY. WE HAVE A LETTER INTO THE PRESIDENT STATING SOME CONCERNS WE HAD IN THE LAST DECISION MAKING PROCESS THAT TOOK PLACE IN THE LAST TWO YEARS. NOW IíM ALSO, AS THE TRIBE HAS INDICATED IN THE LETTER, SUPPORT INTO RENEWABLE ENERGIES AND THOSE MOVING FORWARD IN THAT DIRECTION FOR THE NATION AND UNDERSTANDING THE NEED IN THAT CAPACITY. ALSO SUPPORT THE MEMORANDUM THAT THE PRESIDENT HAS ISSUED ON GOVERNMENT TO GOVERNMENT AND NATION TO NATION CONSULTATION. I HAVE YET TO HEAR ANY GOVERNMENT TO GOVERNMENT, NATION TO NATION CONSULTATION WITH THE TRIBES IN TERMS OF THE PROCESS THAT HAS TAKEN PLACE. I HEAR A LOT OF AND PART OF THE DUTIES I HAVE YOU ARE LOOKING AT THE STAFF FOR THE CULTURAL COMPONENT, YOU ARE LOOKING AT THE DIRECTOR, LOOKING AT THE TRIBAL REPRESENTATIVE THAT HAS TO HANDLE OF ALL OF THESE PROJECTS OFF THE RESERVATION AS WELL AS ON THE RESERVATION. BUT OUR ANCESTRAL LANDS OF THE LOWER COLORADO RIVER COVER A LARGE LAND BASE AS WELL AS THE RIVER CORRIDOR, AND SO THOSE PLACES ARE PRECIOUS AND IMPORTANT TO US FOR OUR EXISTENCE AND OUR NEEDS AS WELL AS TO CONTINUE IN LIVING AND UNDERSTANDING FOR THE FUTURE AS WELL. A WE HAVE A STEWARDSHIP RESPONSIBILITY GIVEN TO US IN OUR BELIEF AND OUR FAITH, AS THE GENTLEMAN SPOKE OF THAT, TOO, THAT INTERPRETATION OF UNDERSTANDING THAT THIS IS WHY WE ARE HERE ON EARTH AS WELL. AS THE PEOPLE OF THIS NATION, I THINK YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND TRIBAL PEOPLE HAVE THAT CAPACITY TO UNDERSTAND THE LAND BASE MORE THAN ANYBODY AND HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY AND THAT DUTY.  

YES.

BUT I HAVE YET TO UNDERSTAND WHERE OUR TRIBAL PEOPLE WHO ARE ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE PROTECTION OF THOSE RESOURCES. THE HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES WITH TRIBES HAVE GONE A LONG WAY,SURE, BUT YET WE HAVE PLACES THAT ARE IMPORTANT, SACRED, RELIGIOUS AREAS THAT DO NOT REQUIRE JUST SIMPLE MITIGATION, DO NOT REQUIRE JUST LOOKING AT AND SEEING HOW WE CAN ADJUST TO A PROJECT. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT AND WE HAVE STATED IN OUR LETTERS THAT WE ARE IN A CULTURAL CRISIS. WE NEED TO ADDRESS THESE MATTERS SOON BECAUSE AS THE DECISIONS WERE MADE RECENT AND I HOPE WE CAN LOOK BACK TO THAT AND COVER THOSE THINGS THAT WE NEED TO ADJUST ON THAT. WE ARE NOT LESSONS TO BE LEARNED BECAUSE, AGAIN, OUR HISTORY, OUR CULTURE IS AT A CRISIS. DO NOT USE US AS A LEARNING POINT TO DEVELOP WHAT HAS TO BE FURTHER IN ACCOMPLISHING THE RESPONSABILITIES OF THE FEDERAL AGENCY HAS AS A TRUST RESPONSIBILITYTO THE TRIBES.  

YES THANK YOU

I AM SAYING THIS BECAUSE, AGAIN, I COME WITH A HISTORY OF HAVING TO DEAL WITH PROJECTS AND THE FEDERAL AGENCIES, ESPECIALLY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR, BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT. AND ITíS NOT ONLY WITH THE RENEWABLE ENERGIES, ITíS WITH OTHER PROJECTS. I HAVE MAJOR ISSUES.  

YES, THANK YOU

AGAIN, THERE IS A RESPONSIBILITY. WHO IS RESPONSIBLE?

THANK YOU, THANK YOU LINDA. YOUR COMMENTS ARE VERY WELL TAKEN. THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES HAS BEEN IN THIS ROOM TWICE WITH LEADERS OF ALL NATIVE AMERICAN TRIBES, HISTORIC MEETINGS. WE ARE TOTALLY COMMITTED TO GOVERNMENT TO GOVERNMENT CONSULTATIONS ON THESE PROJECTS. LET ME ASK BOB TO SPEAK TO THE APPROACH IN THE RENEWABLE ENERGY AREA.  

I, TOO, WANT TO REASSURE THE SPEAKER THAT WE DO TAKE THAT RESPONSIBILITY SERIOUSLY. CONSULTATION IS A REQUIREMENT OF LAW BUT ITíS ALSO THE RIGHT THING TO DO. YOU CAN CERTAINLY SIT IN ON SOME OF THE WORKSHOPS THAT WE ARE GOING TO BE HAVING LATER TODAY. THAT CONSULTATION IS GOING TO BE A COMPONENT OF SOME OF THE DISCUSSION THAT TAKES PLACE DURING THOSE WORKSHOPS. GOVERNMENT TO GOVERNMENT RELATIONSHIPS ARE IMPORTANT. THOSE RELATIONSHIPS SHOULD BE FORMED WELL BEFORE WE HAVE A PROJECT TO BRING BEFORE THE TRIBAL GOVERNMENT AND LEADERSHIP TO TALK ABOUT. SO IN THE INSTRUCTIONS AND DIRECTIONS THAT WE HAVE GIVEN TO ALL LEADERS WITHIN THE BUREAU IS TO DEVELOP THOSE RELATIONSHIPS WITH TRIBAL OFFICIALS UP FRONT, BUT BEFORE WE NEED TO ASK FOR YOUR INPUT ON ANY OF THE PROJECTS SO THAT WE CAN LOOK FORWARD, MOVE FORWARD IN PURSUIT OF OUR COMMON GOALS. SO, YOU KNOW, YOU HAVE RAISED SOME ALLEGATIONS OF DEFICIENCIES RELATIVE TO HOW WE MAY HAVE LACKED, OR DID NOT CONSULT AS YOU WOULD HAVE LIKED THAT CONSULTATION TO HAVE OCCURRED AS PART OF THE PREVIOUS PROJECT PROPOSALS THAT WE ENTERTAIN AND MAKE DECISIONS ON. WE TAKE YOUR CRITICISMS SERIOUSLY AND WE HOPE TO DO BETTER IN THE FUTURE.  

THANK YOU. OTHER QUESTIONS? YES, DOWN HERE, IN FRONT.  

IíM MARC SINCLAIR WITH THE CLEAN ENERGY STATES ALLIANCE. IíM WONDERING, THIS IS DIRECTED TO FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. I THINK YOUR LEADERSHIP IN THE DEALING WITH THE WIND AND WILDLIFE ISSUES, LAND BASED, IS TO BE ACKNOWLEDGED AND IT REPRESENTS A REAL STEP FORWARD. MY FRUSTRATION IS THAT IT HAS TAKEN FROM 2003 UNTIL 2011 TO GET GUIDANCE THAT IS STILL IN DRAFT FORM. I KNOW THIS IS A LAND-BASED CONFERENCE IN TERMS OF WIND BUT I WOULD LIKE TO RECOMMEND AND ASK YOUR RESPONSE IS THERE ANY THINKING TO GET OUT AHEAD IN TERMS OF SIMILAR PROTOCOLS, DECISION MAKING PROCESSES AND STUDY NEEDS FOR THE OFFSHORE WIND CONTEXT, IN THESE ISSUES IN TERMS OF THE MBTA ARE GOING TO BE PROBABLY EVEN MORE DIFFICULT THAN IN THE LAND-BASED CONTEXT. SO, I GUESS IíM LOOKING TO FIND OUT IF YOU HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT BEGINNING TO MOVE THESE GUIDELINES INTO THE OFFSHORE WIND CONTEXT IN TERMS OF A PROCESS WE CAN UNDERSTAND THAT IS PREDICTABLE.  

LET ME TAKE THAT ONE AND THEN ASK THESE GUYS TO PROVIDE MORE DETAIL. IíM ACTUALLY GOING TO CLOSE IN A MINUTE AND TALK ABOUT OUR OFFSHORE WIND INITIATIVE. AS PART OF THE INITIATIVE, WE ARE IN A PERIOD HERE, A SIX- MONTH PERIOD, WHERE WE ARE GATHERING INFORMATION FROM ALL RELEVANT STAKEHOLDERS. AND I PARTICULARLY, ON THE FEDERAL AND STATE AGENCIES THAT HAVE RELEVAT INFORMATION ABOUT CONFLICTS FOR POTENTIAL OFFSHORE WIND SITING AREAS. AND I AM ALSO GOING TO DEAL IN A MINUTE WITH TRIBAL CONSULTATION ISSUES UP FRONT, IN THE ONE OF SIX ISSUES UP FRONT. WE ARE GOING TO BE IN A VERY FERTILE PERIOD FOR THE NEXT SIX MONTHS ON THIS POINT AND WE WILL BE CHALLENGING OUR FRIENDS IN THE FISH AND WILDLIFE TO HELP US IDENTIFY ON THE EAST COAST IN PARTICULAR HOW TO APPROACH THESE BIRD ISSUES. BUT PLEASE, FEEL FREE TO JUMP IN AND EXPAND ON THAT.  

I WOULD JUST SAY, IN GENERAL, I THINK THE PROCESS THAT THE BUREAU OF OCEAN ENERGY AND MANAGEMENT HAS STARTED AROUND THE MID-ATLANTIC AND THE IDENTIFICATION OF WIND ENERGY AREAS OFF THE MIDDLE ATLANTIC IS THE VERY BEST OF BOB'S MANTRA, SMART FROM THE START. WE ARE ENGAGED, STATE COUNTERPARTS ARE ENGAGED, INDUSTRY IS ENGAGED. I THINK THAT HOLDS GREAT PROMISE TO IDENTIFY CONFLICT, RESOLVING CONFLICT UP FRONT. WITH REGARD TO THE ONSHORE WIND TURBINE GUIDELINES, I THINK THAT MUCH, IF NOT MOST OF THAT CAN BE DIRECTLY TRANSFERRED INTO OFFSHORE AND WE NEED TO HAVE THAT CONVERSATION.  

LET ME SAY TO THE PREDICATE OF YOUR QUESTION MANY OF US, AND CERTAINLY THE SECRETARY AND I CANNOT SPEAK TO WHAT HAPPENED BETWEEN 2003 AND JANUARY OF 2009, BUT SINCE WE WALKED IN THE DOOR, WE HAVE BEEN GIVING ATTENTION TO THESE ISSUES, AND WE HOPE ITíS OBVIOUS. ONE OR TWO MORE QUESTIONS, AND THEN I WANT TO TALK ABOUT OFFSHORE WIND A LITTLE BIT. IN THE FRONT AND THEN ON THE AISLE.

HI, I'M KELLY FULLER FROM AMERICAN BIRD CONSERVANCY. I AM VERY HAPPY TO SEE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE TALKING ABOUT THE POPULATION LEVEL IMPACTS ON BIRDS POTENTIALLY FROM RENEWABLE ENERGY. BUT WE ARE CURIOUS SINCE THOSE POPULATION LEVEL IMPACTS ARE ESSENTIALLY GOING TO BE CUMULATIVE THAT IS, YOU MAY LOSE A FEW BIRDS AT INDIVIDUAL WINDFARM ITíS GOING TO ADD UP AND YOUR CUMULATIVE EFFECT IS GOING TO BE WHAT GIVES YOU POTENTIALLY THAT POPULATION LEVEL DECREASE IN BIRDS. HOW ARE YOU GOING TO MANAGE FOR CUMULATIVE LEVEL EFFECTS THAT ARE SPREAD OVER POTENTIALLY MANY DIFFERENT PROJECTS?

DON'T FIGHT OVER THIS ONE, GUYS.

KELLY, THAT IS A GREAT QUESTION. I GUESS I WILL START BY SAYING PART OF OUR GUIDANCE, AND INDEED PART OF THE PREREQUISITE TO RECEIVING A PERMIT WILL BE A COMMITMENT TO THE MONITORING OF THE ADAPTIVE PROCESS THAT WILL GIVE US INFORMATION TO ASSESS THOSE CUMULATIVE IMPACTS. SO WE DID SOME OF THAT IN THE ORIGINAL RELATIVE TO THE EAGLE ACT. CERTAINLY WHEN WE ISSUED THE RULE OF 2009. WE NEED TO DO MUCH MORE OF THAT OVER TIME. THAT IS ASSESS THOSE CUMULATIVE IMPACTS. WE THINK THAT EAGLES ARE PARTICULARLY VULNERABLE JUST BECAUSE OF ñ OF THEIR BEHAVIORS AND THEIR STATUS, IN PARTICULAR GOLDEN EAGLES BUT BALD EAGLES AS WELL. SO WEíRE GOING TO PAY PARTICULAR ATTENTION IN THAT REGARD. BUT I THINK IT DOESNíT MEAN WE WILL NOT CONSIDER THOSE POPULATIONS THAT ARE MORE VULNERABLE, CERTAIN BAT POPULATIONS, WHICH WE HAVENíT MENTIONED MUCH OF TODAY, AND OTHER SPECIES THAT WILL WE HAVE TO. ITíSS OUR JOB TO COLLECTIVELY ASSESS THE CUMULATIVE IMPACT. THEN THROUGH ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT, WHEN THOSE PERMITS COME BACK UP, WE HAVE TO CONSIDER THAT IN THE REISSUANCE TIME PERIOD. SO IT IS OUR JOB. I GUESS THE ANSWER IS YES.

THERE WAS A QUESTION ON THE AISLE HERE, AND THEN BACK IN THE WHITE SHIRT.

HI. I'M LINDA AMELIA. I WORK WITH THE BENTON PAIUTE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, WE ARE HERE WITH THE CHAIRMAN. WE ARE FROM MONO COUNTY. I ACTUALLY LIVE IN SACRAMENTO NEAR ELK GROVE, AND I HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH SEAN HAGERTY OF YOUR OFFICE, MR. ABBOTT, AND AMY DUTCHKEY OUR REGIONAL DIRECTOR HAS PROPOSED A LEASE OF SOME LANDS FOR CONTINUED EXPLORATION FOR SOME GEOTHERMAL. WE ARE ADJACENT TO THE BENTON HOT SPRINGS, 45 MILES FROM MAMMOTH WHERE THERE IS A GREAT DEAL OF GEOTHERMAL. THE UNIQUE ASPECT OF OUR PROJECT IS THAT THE BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS IS PROPOSING TO LEASE ON A LONG-TERM BASIS ABOUT 4,000 ACRES OF LAND FOR OUR EXPLORATION PURPOSES. IT IS VERY UNIQUE. I UNDERSTAND IT HAS NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE, SO WE WILL BE PRECEDENT-SETTING, WE HOPE. BUT WHAT WE WOULD LIKE TO ASK IS THAT YOU LOOK AT THIS CAREFULLY BECAUSE IT WOULD VERY WELL STREAMLINE THE PROCESS, AND THATíS WHAT WEíRE SEEKING. WE DO NOT THINK IT SHOULD TAKE A YEAR. THERE IS NOT THAT LAWYERS OF THE INTERIOR BEING PAID BY THE HOUR. ALSO, THERE IS NO NEED FOR PERMITTING. ACTUALLY, IN TERMS OF BONDING OR DRILLING, AND THERE WOULD BE NO FEES INVOLVED, I UNDERSTAND, IF THERE WERE AN INTERAGENCY SISTER AGREEMENT PUT IN PLACE FOR THE BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS TO LEASE THE LAND ON BEHALF OF THE TRIBE, AND THEN THE LAND WOULD BE MANAGED THROUGH A 638 CONTRACT, I UNDERSTAND, WITH THE TRIBE, AND WE WOULD GO FORWARD WITH OUR EXPLORATION. WE HAVE DOCTOR ROY MINK AS ONE OF OUR CHIEF CONSULTANTS ñ AND I KNOW MANY OF YOU KNOW HIM.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, I DONíT WANT TO YOU ARE A VERY EFFECTIVE ADVOCATE. WEíRE JUST


LET ME JUST ASK THE STAFF DO WE HAVE A SPECIFIC PROPOSAL IN FRONT OF BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT TO ENTERTAIN THE PROPOSAL?

WE HAVE A LETTER, YES SIR, WE DO. WE HAVE A LETTER FROM THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR TO THE BISHOP FIELD OFFICE AND ON THE THIRD WE HAVE A RESPONSE, AND WE WILL BE FINE-TUNING THE ISSUES THAT I PRESENTED TODAY TO YOU THROUGH OUR BREAKOUT SESSION. BUT I WANTED TO SAY HOWDY TO YOU SINCE YOU ARE FROM CALIFORNIA.

WELL, THANK YOU.

YOU ARE A VERY EFFECTIVE ADVOCATE.

THANK YOU, IíM NOT DONE.

WE WILL TAKE IT UP.

FIRST AND FOREMOST, I WANT TO CONGRATULATE YOUR INTEREST IN MOVING FORWARD WITH GEOTHERMAL DEVELOPMENT. I THINK GEOTHERMAL RESOURCES ARE WHERE WE HAVE SOME OF THE HIGHEST POTENTIAL OFACTUALLY HELPING DIVERSIFY OUR NATIONíS ENERGY PORTFOLIO. SO EVERY OPPORTUNITY WE HAVE TO MAKE RESOURCES AVAILABLE, WE SHOULD.

FINAL QUESTION WAS IN THE BACK, IN THE MIDDLE. YES?

I'M SORRY. THE 2005 ENERGY POLICY ACT ESTABLISHED A PILOT OFFICE, AND IT HAS BEEN VERY, VERY EFFECTIVE, WHERE THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE HAD PEOPLE EMBEDDED IN BLM OFFICES, AND I THINK THAT IN GENERAL THAT MODEL IS VERY EFFECTIVE. IS THERE ANY THOUGHT OF POSSIBLY APPLYING THAT TO THE BLM, AND MAYBE EMBEDDING FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE FOLKS THAT CAN WORK ON THESE NEW PROCESSES THAT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT, IN PARTICULAR REGARD TO IMPLEMENTING THE EAGLE CONSERVATION PLAN GUIDANCE AND TRYINGING TO HELP PEOPLE IN THE PERMITTING PROCESS. THE BLM HAS THE RICCO OFFICES AND IíD LIKE FOR THE, IF POSSIBLE, I WOULD LIKE BOB ABBEY TO SHARE THE LOVE AND EXPAND THAT RICCO TO THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE.

YOU HAVE GOT IT. IF WE HAVE SPACE IN OUR OFFICES, YOU ARE CERTAINLY WELCOME TO PARTICIPATE AND SIT AT THOSE DESKS. IN ALL SERIOUSNESS, THE SECRETARY REMINDS US EVERY DAY OF HOW WE CAN WORK BETTER TOGETHER, AND WE ARE COMMITTED TO DOING SO. AND THE EXPERIENCES THAT WE GAIN, IN THE OIL AND GAS PROGRAM, I THINK CAN EXPAND INTO THE RENEWABLE ENERGY PROGRAM. WE ARE CERTAINLY RECEPTIVE TO SUCH AN IDEA AND LOOK FORWARD TO WORKING WITH DAN TO MAKE SUCH THINGS HAPPEN.

GREAT. I THINK THAT WAS PLANTED BY DAN ASHE, I DO NOT KNOW. GOOD QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS. LET ME SAY A COUPLE OF THINGS ABOUT OFFSHORE ENERGY, AND THEN WE ARE GOING TO BREAK FOR LUNCH. THIS CONFERENCE IS FOCUSING ON ONSHORE ENERGY, BUT THE EXPERIENCE THAT ALL OF YOU HAVE BEEN PARTICIPATING IN WITH US ON ONSHORE HAS INFORMED WHAT WEíRE DOING ON OFFSHORE AND WHEN I SAY OFFSHORE, I AM PRIMARILY TALKING ABOUT THE ATLANTIC. THE SOUTH, MIDDLE, AND NORTH ATLANTIC HAS ENORMOUS WIND RESOURCES, 4000 GIGAWATTS, FOUR TIMES THE CAPACITY OF THE CURRENT ENTIRE U.S. GRID IS AVAILABLE OFFSHORE. IT IS A WORLD-CLASS RESOURCE. HERE IS WHAT WE HAVE BEEN DOING THERE, FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE NOT BEEN FOLLOWING YET, AND YOU WILL SEE THE PARALLELS. WE HAVE MOVED OUT ON APPLICATIONS THAT WERE PENDING ON SORT OF A FIRST-COME, FIRST- SERVED BASIS, WITH THE CAPE WIND APPLICATION BEING THE PRIME EXAMPLE OF THAT. THAT TOOK, BY THE TIME THE SECRETARY APPROVED IT LAST FALL, IT WAS EIGHT OR NINE YEARS IN THE MAKING. THAT IS NO WAY TO DO A PERMITTING STRUCTURE. AND IN FACT, TO LINDA'S POINT, THE TRIBAL CONSULTATION ISSUES HAD TO HIT NOT BEEN HANDLED WELL. WE TOOK LITERALLY AN EXTRA YEAR OR SO EXTRA TO DO THAT RIGHT AND TODEAL WITH THE 106 ISSUES WELL. SO WE LEARNED HOW NOT TO DO THINGS. WHAT WE HAVE DONE IN COLLABORATION NOW WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY IS TAKE THE CONCEPT THAT YOU'VE SEEN WITH THE SOLAR PROGRAMMATIC EIS OF TRYING TO IDENTIFY AREAS THAT LOOK THE MOST PROMISING, AND THEN TRAINING EXTRA RESOURCES AND ATTENTION ON THOSE AREAS. ON MONDAY IN NORFOLK, AS THE SECRETARY REFERENCED IN HIS TALK THIS MORNING, HE AND I AND SECRETARY CHU WERE IN NORFOLK TO ANNOUNCE THAT WE HAVE TOGETHER WITH NEW JERSEY, DELAWARE, MARYLAND, AND VIRGINIA IDENTIFIED WHAT SO-CALLED WIND ENERGY AREAS OFF OF EACH OF THOSE COASTS, THAT LOOK LIKE, IN CONSULTATION WITH THE STATES, LOOK LIKE THEY ARE THE MOST PROMISING AREAS FOR WIND ENERGY DEVELOPMENT. WE ARE IN ACTIVE CONSULTATIONS WITH THE GOVERNORS IN THE NORTHEAST AND SOUTHERN STATES. IN FACT, THERE IS A BIT OF A COMPETITION GOING ON AMONG THE GOVERNORS TO GET THESE WIND ENERGY AREAS IDENTIFIED. HERE IS THE MOST INTERESTING PART OF THIS. WHAT WE HAVE DONE AND WHAT WE HAVE LAUNCHED FOR THE WIND ENERGY AREAS IS SOMETHING BEFORE, A NEVER TRIED BEFORE EFFORT, TO TRY TO BRING TOGETHER ALL OF THE FEDERAL AGENCIES THAT HAVE EQUITIES ON THE OFFSHORE, AND THATHAVE THE POTENTIAL TO HAVE AN IMPORTANT IMPACT ON WHETHER THESE PROJECTS GO OR DO NOT GO. WE HAVE THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, WE HAVE NOAA, WE HAVETHE COAST GUARD, WE HAVE THE FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE. ALL AGENCIES THAT HAVE EQUITIES THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, SHIPPING LANES, ETC. FOR THE NEXT SIX MONTHS, FOR ALL OF THESE AREAS, WE WILL BE PULLING TOGETHER DATA, COLLATING IT IN A GIS DATABASE TO HAVE AS MUCH INFORMATION AS POSSIBLE BEFORE WE DO A LEASE SALE ON THESE AREAS. WE HOPE TO START LEASE SALES BY THE END OF THIS YEAR AND EARLY INTO NEXT YEAR. SO THAT INVESTORS WHO ARE INTERESTED IN DOING OFFSHORE WIND WILL HAVE HAD MUCH OF THE WORK ALREADY DONE FOR THEM BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND BY PULLING THIS DATA TOGETHER FOLKS CAN MAKE MORE INFORMED DECISIONS ABOUT WHERE THEY WANT TO BID ON OFFSHORE TRACTS, AND THEN THEY CAN GO INTO THE PROCESS OF INVESTIGNG THEIR DOLLARS IN A COMPREHESIVE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT AND RELATED ACTIVITIES. BUT KNOWING THAT THE FEDS, THE STATE, AND OTHERS ARE VERY INTERESTED. IN CONNECTION WITH THAT PROCESS, WE WILL BE DOING GOVERNMENT TO GOVERNMENT CONSULTATIONS WITH AFFECTED TRIBES, WE'RE WORKING WITH THE HISTORIC PRESERVATION FOLKS ON A PROGRAMMATIC 106 EFFORT SO THAT WE FRONT LOAD THESE ACTIVITIES AND TRULY DO THIS SMART FROM THE START. A VERY EXCITING OPPORTUNITY, AND IT MIRRORS WHATíS GOING ON HERE, WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT HERE ON THE ONSHORE. WEíRE THANKFUL, FRANKLY, FOR THE EXPERIENCE WEíVE HAD ON ONSHORE BECAUSE IT IS GIVING US A GOOD HEAD START ON DOING IT WELL, I THINK, ON OFFSHORE. WE ARE GOING TO BREAK FOR LUNCH BUT NOT WITHOUT A COUPLE OF FINAL ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS. I MENTIONED STEVE BLACK, YOU KNOW HIS LEADERSHIP IN THIS AREA. I WANT JENNEA SCOTT TO STAND UP, JANEA. STEVE IS JUST THE FACE GUY. JENNEA IS THE ONE WHO DOES IT. AND NEAL KEMKAR ALSO OF STEVEíS OFFICE. AND MY COUNSELOR, LIZ KLEIN, WHO IS ACTIVELY INVOLVED IN THESE RENEWABLE ENERGY PROJECTS. [APPLAUSE] THERE ARE MANY MORE. YOU WILL HEAR FROM FRED PEASE THIS AFTERNOON OR TOMORROW. I DID WANT TO ACKNOWLEDGE THEM IN PARTICULAR. THANK YOU FOR A VERY PRODUCTIVE MORNING SESSION. ITíS TIME TO GET YOUR LUNCH AND GO TO THE FIRST OF THE BREAKOUT MEETINGS OVER LUNCH. THANK YOU