Mitigation Policy and Practices
Improving Landscape-Scale State Mitigation Practices for Energy Projects to Enhance Chesapeake Watershed Land Conservation
There are numerous applications for large scale linear energy projects, including commercial scale wind and solar, affecting the lands and waters of the Chesapeake region. At the same time, states are experiencing challenges in meeting goals for conservation of key lands and waters and natural resources. There is a need to develop revised and new state-level policies and practices for landscape-scale mitigation for pipelines and power line projects within the watershed.
A new report — Opportunities to Improve Landscape-Scale Mitigation for Energy Projects in the Chesapeake Region — prepared by the Environmental Law Institute for the Chesapeake Conservation Partnership, recommends specific actions that Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia may consider to address the impacts of proposed energy projects while improving land conservation outcomes. The report identifies numerous steps the region may choose to implement at the state level using existing legal authorities and new authorities where needed. State agencies can use water quality certification, state public utility regulatory decisions, mitigation policies, strategic land use regulations, historic preservation and natural heritage tools, and permitting in effective ways.