I came across a curious story when searching for news items to comment about. The Los Angeles Times states that Los Angeles city officials have bagged a proposal for the city to buy electric power from a solar plant located in the Mohave Desert. Bechtel Corporation, who owns and will soon begin construction on the facility, had hoped that Los Angeles would be the company’s largest customer. However, the reason given by the city’s Department of Water and Power was that the Soda Mountain Solar Project facility would negatively impact to the wildlife at the site the company picked.
A representative with a consulting firm connected to the project states that unless a purchase agreement is concluded soon, the solar plant’s construction may not be able to go forward as planned. However, what is telling is not so much that Bechtel Corp.’s project had hoped to get propped up by Los Angeles municipal revenue, but the reaction from the Sierra Club whose spokesperson is quoted in the LA Times as saying:
“The Sierra Club is delighted to see the city do the right thing and choose not to sign a power purchase agreement with this harmful project,” said Sarah Friedman, a senior campaign representative with the organization. “We support clean energy, but this is the wrong place to do it.”
Even though this project utilizes a clean energy source (solar), environmentalists still oppose Bechtel Corporation’s proposed power plant. The Sierra Club even admits it supports renewables but opposes the solar plant’s location out of some perceived or assumed harm the project would bring to species such as bighorn sheep or desert tortoises. This goes to show that environmentalism is and always has been about circumventing industrial civilization along with eradicating humans from the environment. All of the talk about clean air and clean water is nothing more than lip service and window dressing.