We don’t want to gloat, but we told you about this six months ago:
If you don’t remember (one out of so many scoops):
Environmentalists have hit out at a giant new solar farm in the Mojave Desert as mounting evidence reveals birds flying through the extremely hot ‘thermal flux’ surrounding the towers are being scorched.
After years of regulatory tangles around the impact on desert wildlife, the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System opened on Thursday but environmental groups say the nearly 350,000 gigantic mirrors are generating 1000 degree Fahrenheit temperatures which are killing and singing birds.
According to compliance documents released by developer BrightSource Energy last year, dozens of birds were found injured at the site during the building stage.
Workers at a state-of-the-art solar plant in the Mojave Desert have a name for birds that fly through the plant’s concentrated sun rays — “streamers,” for the smoke plume that comes from birds that ignite in midair.
Federal wildlife investigators who visited the BrightSource Energy plant last year and watched as birds burned and fell, reporting an average of one “streamer” every two minutes, are urging California officials to halt the operator’s application to build a still-bigger version.
The investigators want the halt until the full extent of the deaths can be assessed. Estimates per year now range from a low of about a thousand by BrightSource to 28,000 by an expert for the Center for Biological Diversity environmental group.
Same solar plant, same bird massacre. Only the month has changed. At one streamer every two minutes, with an average amount of daylight of 14 hours (dawn and dusk being especially active for birds), I estimate conservatively at least 75,000 birds fried by this one “green” solar plant alone—a lot more than mere “dozens”—since we first reported the problem.
Thank goodness we have wind turbines to fall back on.
President Barack Obama has mounted a second-term drive to combat climate change, proposing first-ever limits on carbon pollution from new and existing power plants.
His plan aims to help move the U.S. from a coal-dependent past into a future fired by wind and solar power, nuclear energy and natural gas.