As the push to build clean energy infrastructure heats up, projects are hitting a snag: a years-long wait to receive the proper construction permits.

As reported by Route Fifty:

After about 14 years, the Boardman-to-Hemingway Project is still awaiting the last couple of permits it needs to finally be able to proceed.

“Naively or optimistically, we thought it would take four to five years,” Mitch Colburn, Idaho Power’s vice president of planning, engineering and construction said in an interview, of the time it would take to get the necessary federal and state approvals for the project.

But to clean power advocates, the project’s more than decade-long journey through a dizzying federal, state and local permitting process is an example of a critical problem the Biden administration is facing as it seeks to meet its clean energy goals. 

The administration is aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to half of 2005 levels by 2030, and to net zero by 2050, explains a report that the Brookings Institution’s Center on Regulation and Markets released last week.

To reach those goals, the Biden administration included in its massive climate, healthcare and tax package—the Inflation Reduction Act—subsidies to get more people to switch to electric-powered cars and heating, instead of those that run on fossil fuels. 

That’s going to require more electricity though. The Brookings report pointed to a study by the  University of California, Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy that found that to meet those goals, the nation will be using nearly twice as much electricity in 2050 than in 2018.

To be able to do that, Brookings researchers said, the nation will have to not only “quickly” build more clean power plants to generate the extra electricity, but also increase the amount of transmission lines the country has by 60% by 2030.