- Solar energy potential in the California Desert is like oil in the Gulf of Mexico – everyone wants to tap into it.
- Too few decision-makers understand that the California Desert’s vast public landscapes are more than a place for industrial-scale energy development.
- There are better ways to meet our clean energy goals that protect sensitive habitat and ecology, recreation, geology, viewscapes, historic value, and other considerations that are important for Desert communities and healthy landscapes.
As our state and nation continue to move toward greater energy resilience, independence, and sustainability, the demand for public land for renewable energy development in the California Desert continues to grow.
The majority of the investment in new projects is focused on big wind and solar farms that generate lots of power for customers far away. New subsidies, laws, and policies often incentivize this large-scale production, which drives demand for renewable energy production and transmission in the Desert.
To meet statewide mandates under SB 100, California will need to continue the current pace of renewable energy development for the next thirty years.
We have seen first-hand the impacts of large-scale development on California Desert communities and the environment. Lands leased for industrial-scale energy development have to be razed for construction, disrupting wildlife corridors, healthy ecosystems, carbon capturing soils, as well as hunting, rock collecting, and other outdoor activities and viewscapes.