Solar Energy, National Parks, and Landscape Protection in the Desert Southwest

Center for Park Research Report
Published September 2012


View Executive Summary
(PDF, 866 KB, 12 pages)

View Brochure
(PDF, 445 KB, 2 pages)

View Technical Report
(PDF, 5.43 MB, 90 pages)

Solar energy is one of our country’s most promising industries for reducing America’s current reliance on coal-fired power plants that contribute to unhealthy air quality in communities across the country, as well as our national parks. NPCA advocates for establishing smart environmental policies and mitigation strategies for solar energy projects to bring clean, renewable solar energy to market more quickly without compromising the natural resources and recreational values of natural areas such as national parks.

Solar Energy, National Parks, and Landscape Protection in the Desert Southwest describes the diverse, abundant natural resources found within the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts—areas targeted for large-scale solar developments—and explains how inappropriately sited solar developments would irreparably harm these resources. The report centers on case studies of three approved solar facilities, examining the impacts these facilities are likely to have on plants, wildlife, water sources, and scenic vistas. The report outlines how some of the facilities’ plans were altered to reduce such impacts. It also offers a series of recommendations that encourages federal and state agencies to work with each other and other stakeholders to evaluate solar development proposals; urges management agencies to gather comprehensive data on resources that could be affected by proposed solar facilities; and, perhaps most importantly, implores management agencies to smartly site solar developments on previously disturbed lands and areas that have been deemed appropriate for such developments.

Click on the links on the right to read an executive summary of Solar Energy, National Parks, and Landscape Protection in the Desert Southwest. The full report is also available, as is a short brochure titled Getting it Right with Renewable Energy in the Desert Southwest.

Video: Feeling the Heat

Close

Want to learn more about the  ?

The   can be seen in the wild in America’s national parks. Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Sign up to protect parks in   & other states

Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association Community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Sign up to protect   and other National Parks

Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association Community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Please leave this field empty
Yes, please sign me up for NPCA’s newsletter and other emails about protecting our national parks!

National Parks Conservation Association
National Parks Conservation Association

Log In

Or log in with your connected Facebook or Twitter account:

GO

Welcome to our growing community of park advocates. Thanks for signing up!

Sign Up:

Or sign up by connecting your Facebook or Twitter account:

GO