Biden-⁠Harris Administration Delivers on Permitting Progress to Build America’s Infrastructure and Clean Energy Future Faster, Safer, and Cleaner

Coverage Type: 

President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is making once-in-a-generation investments in America’s infrastructure and our clean energy future that are creating good-paying and union jobs, establishing and growing new industries in the United States, tackling the climate crisis, and helping lower costs for families. To deploy these investments, the Biden-Harris Administration has taken aggressive action to accelerate project permitting and environmental reviews. The Administration has developed and is currently executing a Permitting Action Plan; secured $1 billion from the Inflation Reduction Act to improve permitting; passed important reforms in the 2023 Fiscal Responsibility Act that made commonsense changes to the environmental review process, including setting deadlines for completion of reviews and making documents more readable by limiting their length; and took a number of administrative actions to simplify and accelerate the permitting process. By taking these actions, the Administration is ensuring that industry can move forward with key investments and projects, including building out clean energy and transmission, while also being responsible stewards of the environment and protecting communities.

Accelerating construction of high-speed internet projects. In March, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation extended a process for faster historic preservation reviews for communications infrastructure projects on federal lands to all such projects both on and off federal lands. This action will shorten historic preservation reviews from over a year to less than three months. In addition, in April, the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) established and adopted a total of 36 new categorical exclusions that will unlock faster reviews for projects that do not have significant environmental effects. NTIA also developed and released a permitting and environmental mapping tool to help grant recipients and others deploying infrastructure for high-speed Internet service to identify permit requirements and avoid potential environmental impacts. In addition, also in April, the Department of the Interior issued a final rule to streamline approvals of broadband projects on Bureau of Land Management managed lands. Other projects are moving forward, such as DMCI Broadband. In October 2022 the U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded $6 million—through Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act—to DMCI broadband in Michigan to be used to deploy a fiber-to-the-premises network to connect 2,899 people, 94 farms, 56 businesses, and four educational facilities to high-speed internet in Branch and Hillsdale counties in Michigan. After being awarded funding in 2022, the environmental review and approval took less than two months.

FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Delivers on Permitting Progress to Build America’s Infrastructure and Clean Energy Futu