House Republicans: See, We Do Support Renewable Energy!

House Republicans might hate climate change but apparently they support renewable energy projects, as long as they're being built on public lands. The House Committee on Natural Resources, the same group of people that led the charge against the Obama administration's wild lands policy, this afternoon [put forward a different vision](http://naturalresources.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=24...) for what those lands should be used for: they released a set of bills designed to speed development of wind and geothermal power in places like the Outer Continental Shelf, South Dakota, and Idaho.

These bills are part of the Republican's American Energy Initiative, [the iconography for which](http://www.facebook.com/AmericanEnergy) reminds me of nothing so much as Obama '08 ads, dyed in orange. Of course, this being a Republican initiative, its policies don't end with wind and geothermal: [it also includes bills](http://naturalresources.house.gov/Issues/Issue/?IssueID=34108) to speed development of oil resources in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, drilling in the Gulf, and approval of new offshore oil and gas leases.

I imagine that the thinking behind today's release was something like, "Just let them argue against renewable energy projects!" And it would indeed be somewhat hypocritical to argue against oil and gas drilling on public lands but support wind and geothermal projects. But there are plenty of places to build wind and geothermal projects that have yet to be exploited; it's not clear why building on public lands in particular needs to be expedited.

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