Let’s destroy a lot of desert for a little bit of power

Daniel Patterson has some Photoshopped image on his blog to show how bad the Bush administration is because they want to develop domestic energy. What he does not show you is a photo of how damaging solar energy is to natural habitat. Solar panels are inefficient and require a very large amount of land to produce a relatively small amount of energy. Land is also known a Habitat or The Environment. Things liberals normally want to protect, except when it comes to their favorite pipe dream, solar power. Then they become eerily silent about habitat and environmental destruction. Hey, don’t Pigmy Owls live in the desert?


  1. ‘Josey’ — Your attack here is off target, and had you ever contacted me to ask about it you’d know better.

    As a rooftop solar power producer, I favor pursuing America’s energy independence in our cities (rooftops, for example) as much as possible, where we use habitat.

    Also, as a hunter and conservationist, I have been publicly critical of bulldozing desert habitat for big solar.

    The problem is big energy, inc. does not really want people to help America realize energy independence, instead favoring using our public lands for giant energy farms.

    These corporations are still largely unwilling to let Americans help with power production and sales, preferring to control it all so they can charge you higher prices.

  2. ‘Josey’ — From LA Times, as posted on my blog: ‘Daniel Patterson, ecologist and Southwest director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, said geothermal energy holds potential. “But we still have to consider, are our public lands there to be turned into energy farms? Or should we be investing in rooftop solar?”

    Note my emphasis on ROOFTOP solar, not desert solar power plants.

    Please also see July 9 Star article: http://www.azstarnet.com/altsn/default/newsletterclickthru/247516

    ‘Daniel Patterson, southwest director for Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, urged the BLM to locate the solar sites on already degraded land close to existing utility corridors. He also urged it to monitor the use of water.

    ‘Patterson and Eva Sargent of Defenders of Wildlife both suggested that it might be better to direct a needed expansion of solar power to existing rooftops in developed areas.’

    Your claim is wrong, conservationists are concerned about losing good desert open space and habitat.

    Finally, a correction to my above comment: I meant to say, ‘…I favor pursuing America’s energy independence in our cities (rooftops, for example) as much as possible, where we use ENERGY.’

    Seems we may have a lot of common ground here, so let’s focus on working for energy solutions for our future. Thanks.

  3. No one seems to notice wateruse….Hereis water use report for the 2006 report Energy Demands, fro the USDOE…

    Coal fired plant: 100 – 300 gallons per megawatt hour

    Nuclear: 500-1100 gallons per megawatt hour

    Solar Parabolic Trough: 760-920 gallons per megawatt hour.

    The Bureau of land Management (In AZ and the West) said they received 130 applications for large-scale photo-voltatic and concentrated solar on 1 million acres of land.

    Do we have enough water for them????

    (Info stolen from volume 17 numer 1 issue of Arizona Water Resource, a free publication from the univ of Arizona….


  4. Ken Jacobs says

    Daniel, ‘Josey’ doesn’t use facts.

  5. I wouldn’t worry about the water issue… McCain’s going to personally amend the water compact by punching the Colorado River into submission.

  6. Please note that _photovoltaic_ power plants use no water. It is the solar thermal electric plants that require water to condense the steam in their cooling towers (just like coal- or nuclear-powered thermal electric plants).

  7. kralmajales says

    Horray for Ken!


  1. […] brings us to a corrections. On October 23rd we slammed Daniel Patterson over this issue of habitat destruction by solar farms. Patterson corrected us and stated that he […]

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