Solar energy, held up as our future by utopians, is encountering problems with environmental regulators. The federal government has put a moratorium on future solar power efforts on public lands. This may last up to two years. Dan Frosch of the New York Times reports:
The manager of the Bureau of Land Management's environmental impact study, Linda Resseguie, said that many factors must be considered when deciding whether to allow solar projects on the scale being proposed, among them the impact of construction and transmission lines on native vegetation and wildlife. In California, for example, solar developers often hire environmental experts to assess the effects of construction on the desert tortoise and Mojave ground squirrel. [....]
"Reclamation is another big issue," Ms. Resseguie said. "These plants potentially have a 20- to 30-year life span. How to restore that land is a big question for us."
The study is intended to streamline future permitting by generating a single set of environmental criteria to weigh future solar proposals. But in the meantime, the solar industry is finding its ostensible allies can be troublesome.