Obama Administration Trying To Speed up Transmission Line Approvals

October 26, 2011

As part of its push to improve the nation's power system, the Obama administration is trying to expedite construction of 7 transmission lines spanning 3,100 miles in 12 states.

The lines are in various stages of planning and design. They are located in:

  • OR (proposed construction start in June 2013)
  • OR/ID (proposed construction start in January 2014)
  • ID/WY (proposed construction start in July 2013)
  • WY/CO/UT/NV (proposed construction start in July 2014)
  • NM/AZ (no construction start date listed)
  • MN/WI (no construction start date listed)
  • NJ/PA (proposed construction start in June 2014).

See the e-Trans: Federal Permitting Transmission Tracking System (includes substantial information about each project).

Another 33 transmission line projects are in various stages of consideration. To find them, click the "Get All" button on the URL above, near the bottom of the page. Except for one in NH, all are in western states.

Typically, it can take many years, even a decade or more, to get power lines like these approved. The Obama administration is trying to significantly shorten this process, in part by trying to improve collaboration among all the parties involved.

For one example of media coverage of the expedited effort, see:

For more perspective on the planning and development of energy corridors, see the TipSheets of May 28, 2008; Dec. 5, 2007; and May 9, 2007.

For some names of interest groups concerned about these power corridors, and agencies involved, see:


SEJ Publication Types: