New foe for US solar energy: the railroads

June 23, 2011 09:49

Railroad company Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp has joined an unlikely coalition of environmentalists, American Indians and politicians who are opposing a massive solar energy project planned for California's Mojave Desert.

The railroad is sounding the alarm over what it says are potentially "catastrophic" consequences of a proposed 663.5 megawatt solar facility that would be so bright that the glare could temporarily blind train operators.

The Calico Solar project is expected to include both SunCatchers, 40-foot-high solar thermal dishes made of mirrors that resemble giant satellite receivers, and photovoltaic panels on a 4,613-acre site along a rail transportation corridor used by BNSF and Amtrak.

BNSF has filed multiple complaints with California regulators over the project, which was approved by the state last year but is undergoing a new round of hearings to approve the inclusion of photovoltaic panels on the site.

Related Content

Breaking news
April 21, 2018
Japan PM Abe says N. Korean move is 'forward motion' but results essential


Israel Weather
  • 14 - 25
    Beer Sheva
    16 - 22
    Tel Aviv - Yafo
  • 12 - 21
    15 - 21
  • 19 - 36
    17 - 28