On June 7, 2013, as part of his initiative to create jobs through infrastructure development, President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum that will speed the modernization of the nation’s electric grid. The memorandum is intended to improve grid reliability, save consumers money, and support clean energy jobs and industries by making renewable energy easier to access across the country.
Transmission projects often cover hundreds of miles and involve multiple federal, tribal, state and local jurisdictions with diverse interests and responsibilities. Collaborating early to minimize duplication and delays is vital to getting critical projects to construction to better serve American homes and businesses. The Presidential Memorandum directs federal agencies to create an integrated pre-application process across the Federal government to help identify and address issues before the formal permit application process begins, and streamline the coordination of permitting processes across the federal, state, and tribal governments. The memorandum also directs agencies to identify and improve the use of energy corridors on federal lands that are most suitable for siting electric transmission projects, to help expedite permitting while improving environmental and community outcomes.