Monday, November 16, 2009

Opposition to Ivanpah Comes Out of Its Shell

Last week we posted about the deal Brightsource (and its contractor Bechtel) cut with the unions to build the massive Ivanpah solar installation in San Bernardino County. At the time it seemed like all of the political prerequisites were in place (alternative energy, union jobs in a high unemployment areas, tax revenue, etc..) and that it would be smooth sailing for the project.

Not so fast says San Bernardino County Supervisor Brad Mitzvelt who is seeking to trump all of the aforementioned political assets with a turtle. Tortoise, actually-- lots of them. Desert tortoises.

In the latest manifestation of the clash between conservationists and alternative energy companies, Mitzfelt is arguing that the project will eat up too much invaluable habitat for the desert tortoise. He has the support of environmental groups.

Mitzfelt is also arguing that the revenue projections are specious becuase most of the economic benefit would go to Nevada and other parts of California.

Public hearings on the draft EIR are pending...stay tuned.