Many water withdrawal projects involve planning and engineering long before any permits are obtained. DEQ's Office of Water Supply is responsible for assisting the public with such planning and is also involved with the permitting process.
After a proposed power plant has received approval from the State Corporation Commission (SCC) and location approval from the local government, it must apply for all applicable permits from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. Depending on the plant, this could include permits for air, water and/or waste. Air permits that are issued to power plants undergo a very rigorous review and can take a year or more to issue depending on the size and make-up of the plant.
In March 2011, the Virginia legislature enacted broad guidelines for local ordinances for solar and wind. The law states that any local ordinance related to the siting of solar or wind energy facilities must:
* Be consistent with the Commonwealth Energy Policy (§ 67-102)
* Provide reasonable criteria for wind and solar energy siting, protecting the locality while promoting wind and solar development
* Establish reasonable requirements for noise limitations, buffer areas, set backs, and facility decommissioning
Under the Ground Water Management Act of 1992, Virginia manages ground water through a program regulating the withdrawals in certain areas called Ground Water Management Areas (GWMA). Currently, there are two Ground Water Management Areas in the state. The Eastern Virginia Ground Water Management Area comprises an area east of Interstate 95 and south of the Mattaponi and York rivers. The Eastern Shore Ground Water Management Area includes Accomack and Northampton counties.
In April 2010, Virginia enacted the green jobs tax credit. For every green job created with a yearly salary of $50,000 or more, the company will earn a $500 income tax credit for five years. The Office of Commerce and Trade will develop a full list of jobs eligible to qualify for the tax credit. Companies will be allowed tax credits for up to 350 green jobs created. If the taxpayer does not have enough tax liability to take the full credit, it may be carried forward for up to 5 years.
Virginia’s 1999 electric industry restructuring law requires the state's electricity providers to disclose -- "to the extent feasible" -- fuel mix and emissions data regarding electric generation. Legislation in 2007 and 2008 related to Electric Utility Regulation amended the restructuring laws, but still require emissions and fuel mix disclosure.
This legislation describes permitting procedures and requirements for exploration activities. For the purpose of this legislation, exploration is defined as the drilling of test holes or stratigraphic or core holes of a depth greater than fifty feet for the purpose of determining the location, quantity, or quality of uranium ore.
The Enterprise Zone Real Property Investment Grant provides qualified zone investors with cash grants for industrial, commercial or mixed use property. The grant is equal to 20% of the excess above the minimum required investment up to a maximum of $100,000 for companies investing $5 million or less.