October 30, 2018

Trump Signs Bill Streamlining Permits For Hydropower Plants

President Donald Trump has signed into law a bill from a Virginia congressman that streamlines the permitting process for certain hydropower plants, including a kind Dominion Energy is considering building.

The Roanoke Times reports under U.S. Rep. Morgan Griffith's bill, federal regulators would have to make a decision on a closed-loop pumped storage hydropower project within two years of an application being submitted.

Dominion already has one such plant in Bath County and is currently evaluating two additional projects in Virginia's coalfields region. The renewable energy systems move water to create energy.

Republican state lawmakers passed legislation last year encouraging utilities to establish such plants in abandoned coal mines. Advocates said it would help the economically depressed region.

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