James Madison University

What is the VRS3?

The VRS3 is a screening tool to help land use decision makers evaluate the viability of land within their jurisdictions for wind energy installations.  It includes land use and environmental criteria as well as community development considerations.

In Senate Bill 262, which enacted the Virginia Energy Plan in 2006, the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (DMME) was assigned the responsibility of developing a numerical scoring system to help evaluate the suitability of sites within the Commonwealth for wind and solar energy systems.

The VRS3 was consequently designed for use by government decision makers in the Commonwealth of Virginia to aid land use planning related to wind and solar energy. Although developers, private citizens, businesses, and non‐profit groups may use the VRS3, the features and methods of these tools are designed to facilitate land‐use planning and land‐use decision-making.

In order to support these types of analysis, the VRS3 provides a workbook to help local officials evaluate the potential for renewable energy systems in their communities. The workbook is the VRS3 Wind  Scoring Workbook.