Brown pushes solar project

Don’t stop that project

Gov. Jerry Brown filed a brief recently asking a federal court to deny a request to bar the completion of the Ivanpah solar project in California’s Mojave Desert, according to media reports.

Brown filed the brief in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in late July in response to a lawsuit filed in January by the conservation group Western Watersheds Project against the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and BrightSource Energy Inc.—the developer in charge of construction of the utility-scale solar project—over concerns about desert tortoises in the area of the proposed project.

State and federal officials approved the 370-megawatt solar project in fall 2010. The project is expected to create 1,000 construction jobs and produce enough clean energy to power 140,000 homes. Its completion is integral to satisfying Brown’s requirement that one-third of California’s electricity comes from renewable resources by the end of 2020.