RAPID/Geothermal/Washington/Transmission

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Regulatory and Permitting Information Desktop Toolkit

Washington Geothermal Transmission & Interconnection(8-WA)

Developers must obtain Transmission Siting Certification from Washington State Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC), for the construction, reconstruction, or modification of electrical transmission facilities under RCW 80.50.045 and any facility that is located in a national interest electric transmission corridor as specified in RCW 80.50.045. Certain types of facilities may obtain certification, but it is not mandatory. Facilities for which certification is not mandatory are listed in WAC 463-61-030 and include:

  • Facility with a nominal voltage of at least 115,000 volts, and is proposed to be located in a completely new corridor which is located in more than one jurisdiction where at least one such jurisdiction has promulgated land use plans or zoning ordinances.
  • Facility with a nominal voltage in excess of 115,000 volts, and is proposed to be located outside an existing or designated electrical transmission corridor identified in the previous two categories. WAC 463-61-030.

Developers are required to comply with certain requirements prior to submitting their application, including providing notice of pre-application and participation in a public informational meeting. WAC 463-61-060(4). After the developer submits the application, EFSEC will review it and make a recommendation to the Governor. WAC 463-30-320. If the Governor chooses to approve the application, then a Transmission Site Certification will be executed. RCW 80.50.100(2)(b).

Local Process
The local transmission siting process can play a central role in Washington. Any developer seeking to build transmission lines in Washington should consult with the local jurisdiction to see if any permits and/or approvals are required from the local authorities as to location of the lines.

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Determine Which State and Federal Permits Apply

Use this overview flowchart and following steps to learn which federal and state permits apply to your projects.

Permitting at a Glance

Washington Federal

Transmission Siting Agency: Washington State Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Transmission Siting: Transmission Siting Certification
Transmission Siting Threshold: Certification is option, but the siting thresholds are as follows:
  • Facility with a nominal voltage of at least 115,000 volts, and is proposed to be located in a completely new corridor which is located in more than one jurisdiction where at least one such jurisdiction has promulgated land use plans or zoning ordinances.
  • Facility with a nominal voltage in excess of 115,000 volts, and is proposed to be located outside an existing or designated electrical transmission corridor identified in the previous two categories.

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