The Tortoise vs. Solar Power

Gov. Brown, a former AG who filed many lawsuits to protect the environment, sided with a renewable energy producer in a lawsuit to stop a huge solar thermal power project in the Mojave Desert on behalf of the threatened desert tortoise.
July 24, 2011, 9am PDT | Irvin Dawid
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"No project can be considered clean or green when it involves destruction of habitat for a species listed under Endangered Species Act on this scale," said Michael Connor, California director for Western Watersheds Project, which is based in Reseda, California.

Governor Jerry Brown apparently thought otherwise, taking action to support the contested $2.2 billion Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in the Mojave Desert. Brown submitted a brief to deny the injunction, which centers on the plant being located on "5.4 square miles of high quality habitat for the threatened desert tortoise."

The plant "will deploy 347,000 heliostat mirrors focusing solar energy on boilers located on three centralized solar power towers. The receivers will generate steam to drive specially adapted steam turbines that will generate electricity."

Thanks to Sierra Club CA Desert Committee

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Published on Friday, July 22, 2011 in Environmental News Service
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