House approves Renewable Energy
Feb 15, 2007 The Associated Press
Legislation intended to promote the generation
and transmission of electricity from clean, renewable
sources was whisked through the House on Wednesday.
Gov. Bill Richardson called the vote "a major milestone"
in his clean-energy agenda.
He had asked lawmakers to make the Renewable Energy
Transmission Authority bill, which failed last year,
a priority in the 60-day session that ends March
The House approved the bill on a vote of 50-16
with no debate. It headed to the Senate.
The legislation creates a quasi-governmental agency
that could build or buy, and operate, transmission
facilities for electricity produced from sources
including the sun, wind or hydropower - but not
from fossil fuels or nuclear facilities.
The authority could sell revenue bonds and use
the proceeds to finance or buy facilities.
Richardson said the bill "will help ranchers diversify
into the burgeoning wind energy market."
The lack of transmission capacity is the most significant
factor limiting wind development in the West, according
to the state Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources
The authority would provide additional capacity
to get electricity delivered throughout the state
and into neighboring states.
The Renewable Energy Transmission Authority bill