BLM Announces Solar Energy Rental Schedule

In support of President Obama's energy strategy, which calls for rapid development of renewable energy – particularly on U.S. public lands, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has released a rental schedule for solar energy right-of-way authorizations on public lands.

The BLM is required by the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) to collect an annual rental payment for right-of-way authorizations on public lands. FLPMA also requires that rents for these authorizations reflect the fair market value for the use of public lands.

The solar rental schedule was developed based on review and analysis by the BLM, the U.S. Department of the Interior and the U.S. Department of Energy of economic models comparing the effects various rental rates may have on different kinds of solar projects. The schedule developed from this review and analysis includes a base rent for the acreage of public land included within the right-of-way authorization and a megawatt capacity fee based on the size of the project.

The base rent will be paid upon the date of issuance of the right-of-way authorization and will be paid on a continuing annual basis during the term of the authorization. This is a per-acre rental fee that varies from county to county, based on the different average rural land values for each county published by the National Agricultural Statistics Service.

The megawatt capacity fee will be paid on an annual basis upon the start of generation of electricity from a facility, based on the megawatt size of that facility. No megawatt capacity fee will be due until a facility is in operation.

SOURCE: U.S. Bureau Of Land Management

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