UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20240
 
October 20, 2008
 
In Reply Refer To:
2800/2920 (350) P
 
EMS TRANSMISSION 10/29/2008
Instruction Memorandum No. 2009-013
Expires: 09/30/2010
 
To:                  All Field Officials
 
From:               Assistant Director, Minerals and Realty Management
 
Subject:           LR 2000 Data Standards for Solar Energy Applications
 
Program Area:  Rights-of-Way (ROW) Management, Land Use Authorizations, Solar Energy
 
Purpose: This Instruction Memorandum (IM) establishes policy for coding utility-scale solar energy applications in LR 2000.
 
Policy/Action: This IM restates and clarifies existing policy and creates additional data standards for utility-scale solar energy ROW applications and authorizations. “Utility-scale” is defined as any project that proposes to generate electricity that will enter the electric transmission grid. Instruction Memorandum No. 2007-097 directed Bureau of Land Management (BLM) employees to use commodity code 975 to identify solar energy applications and authorizations in LR 2000. In addition, employees were directed to note whether the application was for photovoltaic (PV) or concentrating solar power (CSP) technology. 
 
The following new data standards and business practices will be applied to all pending and new solar energy applications. All pending solar energy applications and authorized ROW grant and permit cases in LR 2000 must be updated to conform to these data standards within 30 days of issuance of this IM in order to run accurate BLM-wide reports. 
 
1.      Upon receipt of a new solar energy right-of-way application or land use permit for site testing, confirm that the activity could be authorized in the identified location and, if so, serialize the application and annotate the case serial register page (case) with: 
  • Commodity Code 975 Solar Energy Facility
  • AC-124 (APLN RECD) 
  • Enter date application is received.
         There are two kinds of solar technologies, CSP and PV. We have established acronyms for all technologies that the Department of Energy considers ready or nearly ready for commercial deployment. Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) technologies include parabolic trough (TROUGH), power tower (TOWER), Linear Fresnel Reflector (LNRFRESNL), and Dish/Engine (DSHENGINE). Photovoltaic (PV) technologies include Flat Plate (FLATPLATE) and Concentrating (CONCNTRATNG). Field Offices receiving applications for other technologies should consult WO-350 for the appropriate acronym. In Action Remarks for AC-124, enter the number of megawatts proposed for development followed by the type of technology in the exact format shown below. 
                               
                              #MW PV Flat Plate
                              #MW PV ConcntrAtng
                              #MW CSP Trough
                              #MW CSP Tower
                              #MW CSP DshENGINE
                              #MW CSP LnrFresnl
 
           Examples: 4000MW PV CONCNTRATNG
                               200MW CSP DSHENGINE
 
Because all utility-scale solar energy ROW applications will be processed as Category 6 ROWs, also annotate those cases with: 
  • AC-845 – (CATEGORY 6 COST RECOVERY)
         Enter the date on which the application was received.
 
Enter the complete land description following data standards for legal land description, including reliable acreage estimates, so that the application will properly map in GeoCommunicator.  
  1. Review the application for completeness. If a ROW application is not complete when filed, or the applicant has not submitted a complete plan of development, send a written deficiency notice to the applicant (1) identifying the additional information that is needed to process the application, (2) requesting an initial cost recovery fee of $50,000, and (3) establishing a date by which the information and cost recovery fee must be submitted, typically 90 days.  Annotate the case with: 
  • AC-104 (ADDTL INFO RQSTD)
  • AC-106 (MONIES REQUESTED)
          Use the date the deficiency notice is signed requesting additional information and/or cost recovery fee.
                          
                           AC-247 (FUTURE ACTION SUSPENSE) (OPTIONAL)
                           Enter date due.
 
                           If the application is denied/rejected/withdrawn, proceed to steps 8 and 10.
 
3.      After the additional information and/or cost recovery fees are received, delete AC-247 from the case and annotate the case with:
 
  • AC-110 (APLN COMPLETE) (Valid for case types 28XXXX)
  • Enter the date application is determined to be complete. 
  1. When the authorized officer has estimated the processing time required for the ROW application, notify the applicant, in writing, within 60 calendar days and annotate the case with: 
  • AC-182 (APLNT NTF PROC TIME) (Valid for case types 28XXXX)
         Enter date notification sent to applicant.
  • AC-183 (ANTICIPATED DEC DATE) (Valid for case types 28XXXX)
         Enter anticipated date when processing will be complete.
 
Note: AC-182 (APLNT NTF PROC TIME) and AC-183 (ANTICIPATED DEC DATE) would not be used until an application has been determined to be complete and proper processing fees have been submitted (AC-110 – APLN COMPLETE). Do not remove AC-183 (ANTICIPATED DEC DATE) when case processing is complete and a decision to grant or deny the application has been issued as it will be used to measure compliance with the customer service standard. 
  1. When the Notice of Intent to initiate an Environmental Impact Statement is published in the Federal Register, annotate the case with: 
  • AC-004 (NEPA ANALYSIS INITIATED)
          Enter the date of the Federal Register publication.
          Include the Federal Register citation in Action Remarks. 
  1. When the Record of Decision is signed, annotate the case with: 
  • AC-005 (NEPA ANALYSIS APPROVED)
  • Enter the environmental document number in Action Remarks. 
  1. When processing is complete and a grant is offered to applicant, annotate the case with:
  • AC-241 (AUTH OFFERED APPLICANT)
  • Enter the date the grant offer letter is signed. 
8.      When processing is complete, enter the appropriate AC.  
  • AC-307 (ROW GRANTED-ISSUED) (Valid for case types 28XXXX)
  • Enter the date the ROW grant is issued. 
  • AC 276 (PMT-LIC ISSUED) (Valid for case types 292XXX)
  • Enter the date the permit is issued. 
  • AC-125 (APLN REJ/DENIED)
  • Enter the date of the rejection decision. 
  • After the appeal period expires, enter AC-970 (CASE CLOSED). 
  1. If an applicant files for land that is included in another renewable energy application (wind or solar), enter AC-124 (APLN RECD) with the proposed megawatts and technology in Action Remarks. (See 1. above.) Then add AC- 896 (CONFLICT IDENTIFIED), using the same date as AC-124, and adding information in Action Remarks to denote the serial number of the application that is first in line.  
    Example:     CONFLICT W CACA050105
                                   
    10.     If an applicant withdraws the application, annotate the case with: 
  • AC-130 (APLN WITHDRAWN)
  • Enter the date the application is withdrawn. 
  • AC-970 (CASE CLOSED)
  • Enter the date the case is closed. 
Timeframe: This policy becomes effective immediately. 
 
Budget Impact: The application of this policy will result in the ability to pull complete reports on the status of solar energy applications and eliminate the need for field offices to create and maintain separate spreadsheets for the purpose of tracking and reporting on solar energy ROW applications.  The minimal cost to create and maintain these records is expected to be more than offset by the benefit of being able to run accurate reports from LR 2000.
 
Background: There is currently an extremely high level of public, media, and Congressional interest in solar energy development on public lands, and there continue to be numerous requests for data about existing solar energy applications. Case serial register pages in LR 2000 are the appropriate and best place to collect and maintain information about the nature and status of individual applications and from which to run reports that give a complete picture of the BLM’s solar energy program. In order to maximize the amount of information available to BLM employees and to the public, it is necessary to update our data standards for solar energy applications and our Corporate Metadata Repository as well as emphasize the importance of accurate, timely, and complete data entry in LR 2000.
 
Manual/Handbook Sections Affected: Manual 2801, ROW Management, and Handbook H‑2801-1.
 
Coordination: BLM Data Administrators, State Office ROW Leads, National Operations Center (Office Code), WO-350. 
 
Contact: Please contact me at 202-208-4201 if you have questions or concerns, or your staff may contact Rick Stamm at 202-452-5185 or Linda Resseguie at 202-452-7774. 
 
 
Signed by:                                                                 Authenticated by:
Michael Nedd                                                             Robert M. Williams
Assistant Director                                                      Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
Minerals and Realty Management