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Can Big Solar and Wildlife Co-Exist? Maybe, Says Arizona Conservation Group

Generally speaking, solar energy installations come in two flavors: small- and medium-scale systems that are installed atop roofs and in empty lots (broadly referred to a "distributed generation"); and large, utility-scale solar power plants that sit on acres and acres of land.

A common critique of distributed generation is that, thanks to trees and other obstructions, not every roof is good for solar panels; a common critique of utility solar is that the plants take up lots of land and can disrupt surrounding habitats.

Case in point vis-à-vis the latter: a new assessment released Tuesday by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management

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Really, Really Big Solar Power Project Counts Google Among Its Backers

The Ivanpah solar power plant is a work in progress along a stretch of California desert just west of the Nevada border.

Earlier this week, Google announced it will invest $168 million in the 370-megawatt (MW) project, which relies on solar thermal technology that's sometimes informally called the "power tower" (pictured left). This announcement comes after the Internet search company last week made known its $5 million investment in a Germany-based solar energy facility.

Unlike photovoltaic (PV) systems, which convert the sun's rays directly into electricity,

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Conservationists Sue Federal Government Over California Solar Energy Plant

It's been a long, hard road for the Ivanpah Solar Project, a 392-megawatt (MW) solar thermal plant to be built in California's Mojave Desert. In an effort to gain regulatory approval, project developers have scaled back the project's scope, faced environmental setbacks and had the project opened for public comment.

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After Panel Approval, Ivanpah Solar Project Open to Public Comment

One of the main arguments put forth by those opposed to the Ivanpah solar thermal project in California's Mojave Desert is that the negative environmental impact of the plant would be too great. On August 3, a panel of the California Energy Commission (CEC) weighed in.

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