One week ago I drove by the solar plant near Tonopah Nevada. It has given a temporary boost to the economy as it is built, as workers are staying in motels nearby. Long range there will be very few jobs. It is the mirror heat type. Driving by thought “gee that would burn up any bird that flew into that area.” That is indeed the case.
From butterflies to eagles they are being torched. And billions of our money is being spent by the Obama Administration to make it happen. That is not the objective, the objective is to score political points in elections, but the killing of birds is happening. This video explains the technology and why the birds are dying.
Here part of an article by FreeBeacon that focuses on a new solar plant in California:
The Obama administration has opened up a new front in its war on America’s eagles. For years, the president has relied on wind turbines to orchestrate his eco-genocide. Biologists estimate that wind farms kill as many as 328,000 birds each year by chopping them out of the sky. The administration’s successful weaponization of solar farms will only accelerate the death rate.
Studies indicate that the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in California has proved to be an especially efficient apparatus for eagle extermination. The facility, which was financed in part by a $1.6 billion taxpayer-backed loan from the Department of Energy, has been incinerating innocent birds with heat lasers created by its massive array of 350,000 garage door-sized mirrors.
National Journal reports:
First, insects are drawn to the reflective light of the solar mirrors. That draws small, insect-eating birds, which in turn draw larger predatory birds. The rays of the mirrors’ reflected light produces temperatures from 800 degrees to 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Any animal caught in the intense glare of the mirror’s rays may catch fire and plummet toward the ground, or spontaneously combust altogether.
Bloomberg notes that the birds are either “incinerated in flight; their feathers are singed, causing them to fall to their deaths; or they are too injured to fly and are killed on the ground by predators.” Birds that ignite after passing into the Ivanpah kill zone are known as “streamers.” Reports estimate that 141 birds have died at the Ivanpah facility, which opened in February. http://freebeacon.com/blog/the-obama-bird-genocide-is-out-of-control/
A local newspaper this to say about the carnage:
When hundreds of thousands of mirrors focus solar energy on the 460-foot towers at Ivanpah solar plant in northeastern San Bernardino County, butterflies, dragonflies and other winged insects are attracted to the intense white glow — like moths to a porch light.
Insect-eating birds pursue the bugs, and then come the falcons and other raptors to snag the smaller birds.
And when they fly into the heat zone — as hot as 800 degrees — around the towers, they are maimed and die.
Investigators from the National Fish and Wildlife Forensics Laboratory, in a report kept confidential until this week, describe the power towers as a “mega trap” that claims layers of species in the same food chain. The lab is part of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
“There were hundreds upon hundreds of butterflies (including monarchs, Danaus plexippus) and dragonfly carcasses,” the investigators said. “Some showed singeing, and many appeared to have just fallen from the sky. … Birds were also observed feeding on the insects. At times birds flew into the solar flux and ignited.” http://www.pe.com/local-news/topics/topics-environment-headlines/20140408-solar-ivanpah-project-described-as-deadly-trap-for-wildlife.ece#
Not as warm and fuzzy a source of energy as the federal government promised. Why is it being “subsidized”? Are there backroom bribes? I have a saying, “Good ideas can get funding, only bad ideas need subsidies.”
In fact this article says it is less efficient than photovoltaic, although AUN-TV believes that unless there are no subsidies, there is no way to tell what the real cost is: Although Ivanpah’s power supply contracts are confidential, California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) documents show that the contract price is “at or below” 12.5 cents per kilowatt-hour before time-of-day adjustments.
While BrightSource probably was cheaper than utility-scale PV projects when the contracts were signed in 2008, this is no longer the case.
According to the DOE, the average price for utility-scale PV dropped from about 21 cents per kilowatt-hour in 2008 to 11 cents per kilowatt-hour in 2013. Some contracted prices for large-scale PV have fallen below 7 cents, according to a recent report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Medium-sized PV projects in California today also are hitting lower prices than Ivanpah. For example, the CPUC in 2013 approved 23 separate PV projects up to 20 megawatts in capacity each at a weighted average price below 8 cents per kilowatt-hour, after time-of-delivery adjustments.
Given that PV already has achieved about 10 times the scale of solar thermal in terms of total deployment, and that price reduction in PV seems to be accelerating, it will be difficult, if not impossible, for BrightSource to win bids for large-scale projects in the region with prices at or near Ivanpah’s.
Moreover, PV cost reduction is helping to create new opportunities for small-scale distributed solar power at residential and commercial buildings. Eventually, it could emerge as a disruptive force to the traditional utility business model, and affect procurement of large-scale resources, including solar thermal power. http://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2014/02/19/largest-solar-thermal-plant-completed-ivanpah
A scientist has told AUN-TV that PV costs are higher than stated because of the maintenance and replacement costs of PV. UK Feed-in Tariffs for PV are calculated for an economic lifetime of 25 years and they can lose up to 1% per year of their power.