Western Mojave Offers Warning on Wind Energy Impacts

Several wind energy projects are in the early phases of planning and development throughout the Mojave Desert, including Granite Wind in the Victor Valley and Black Lava Butte near Joshua Tree National Park.  Citizens and conservationists that care for their way of life and land may want to pay attention to what is happening to the desert habitat near Tehachapi and the town of Mojave, California.  Terra-Gen Power LLC is installing over 300 wind turbines -- each nearly 30 stories in height -- across ecologically intact desert lands. The project is known as the Alta Wind Energy Center

Friends of Mojave, a group of concerned citizens, formed to raise awareness about the impacts of the projects on the once quiet rural lifestyle and beautiful desert landscapes.  They have documented the destruction with the photos below:
A pile of Joshua Trees destroyed by crews constructing the Alta Wind Energy Center.  These trees can live for hundreds of years, and some specimens have lived for thousands of years, enduring the rigors of the desert.  This wind energy project destroyed them in a matter of moments. Photo by Friends of Mojave.
Joshua Tree woodland and creosote bush scrub habitat being destroyed to make way for the Alta Wind Energy Center. Photo by Friends of Mojave.
Wind turbines pose a serious threat to birds and bats once in operation, and wind farms in West Virginia and Pennsylvania have killed thousands of birds and bats.  The nearby Pine Tree Wind project has even killed at least 6 Golden Eagles in just three years.  That's probably faster than the birds can reproduce to sustain a local population.

You can view more photos of the destructive potential at the Basin and Range Watch website, and read more about the impacts of wind energy near Tehachapi at the Friends of Mojave website.  If you have photos of wind energy destruction near you, email them to Basin and Range Watch.

Warning: The following video shows a vulture being struck by a wind turbine.  Thousands of rare birds and bats have met the same fate.  The American Bird Conservancy estimates that by the year 2030, about 1,000,000 birds will be killed by wind turbines each year.


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