The licensing process for some hydropower projects in the US is set to become more efficient after US President Donald Trump signed into law Bill S.3021, the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 (AWIA).

The President signed the bill on 23 October, after it had previously passed the US Senate. AWIA will facilitate a more efficient licensing process for proposed projects at existing non-powered dams and for closed-loop pumped storage; shorten the approval timeline for projects utilizing existing conduits; provide regulatory incentives for investments at existing hydropower facilities; and modernize preliminary permit terms and deadlines for starting construction of newly licensed projects.

It also authorizes construction of Army Corps of Engineers water resources projects for flood risk management, navigation, hurricane and storm damage risk reduction, and environmental restoration.