During former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar’s time in the Obama administration he constantly touted his spearheading of commercial-scale solar projects on federal land.
He told The Denver Post‘s Mark Jaffe in 2011 that the locations chosen were the “sweet spots.”
Well, it turns out those spots weren’t so sweet after all. When an auction was held yesterday for the solar industry to bid on the federal plots in Colorado, a grand total of zero – yes, zero – bids were placed.
Reports E&E News (behind paywall):
LAKEWOOD, Colo. — A first-ever competitive auction held here today that was supposed to drive future development of commercial-scale projects inside solar energy zones across the Southwest was a dud, drawing no industry bids.
The auction results startled top officials with the Bureau of Land Management, who conceded the agency may now have to go back and review its plans to get developers to commit to projects inside the two solar energy zones (SEZs) up for bid at today’s auction in Colorado, as well as 17 other SEZs spread across six Southwestern states.
BLM had wanted the first competitive bidding auction here to serve as a model for how to guide solar development in the SEZs across the West. Today’s auction involved three parcels, including a 1,064-acre parcel in the so-called De Tilla Gulch SEZ in Saguache County, and two parcels covering 2,600 acres inside the Los Mogotes East SEZ in nearby Conejos County.