June 20, 2004


The AP reports:
'... the House by a 229-186 vote approved a bill [see earlier post] that would ease environmental regulations for production of renewable energy, including electricity developed from wind, solar, biomass and hydropower.

'Rep. Richard Pombo, R-Calif., the bill's sponsor, argued it would speed up permit approval for renewable energy facilities. But environmentalists strongly opposed the measure and maintained that it would lead to construction of dams and garbage incinerators without adequate environmental review.

'"This bill is a cynical wolf in sheep's clothing," said Andrew Fahlund of American Rivers, an environmental advocacy group.'
But in the U.K., Friends of the Earth issued a press release calling for an even more drastic stand, automatic approval of renewable energy projects:
'In its submission to the Government's consultation on PPS22, the national planning policy statement on renewable energy, Friends of the Earth says that there must be a presumption in favour of renewable energy sources, such as wind, wave and solar power. This would mean that planning authorities could only reject applications in exceptional circumstances.'