Western state governors dealt with difficulties in building transmission lines to get the West’s abundant power generation resources to the rest of the nation at a meeting Thursday in Coeur d’Alene.
Montana Democratic Governor Brian Schweitzer told the Western Governors’ Conference, that something must be done to get transmission lines built in America.
He said major barriers include getting permits to build on government lands and public opposition to power lines in residential areas.
Governors also heard from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that fires are becoming bigger and more destructive because of a combination of factors including drought, insect infestations and disease.
Undersecretary of the U.S.D.A Harris Sherman said potential solutions include expensive practices like controlled burns, thinning and pest control.
Meanwhile, Washington state Democratic Governor Chris Gregoire has succeeded Idaho Republican Butch Otter as chair of the Western Governors’ Association.
Gregoire said she would push a program called “Get Out West!” intended to get children outdoors and draw tourists to the region. (AP)