Tuesday, August 24, 2010

It ain’t over ‘till it’s over.

My apologies to Lenny Kravitz and others for cribbing that great song title.

I read a disturbing post yesterday at Coyote Crossing and saw an even more
disturbing photograph, one sent to Chris by the folks at Basin and Range
Watch. They were visiting the Ivanpah SEGS site evidently yesterday when they
discovered that the stakes are already in the ground along some of the roads and around the site of #1, which going from memory may be the site closest to the freeway and at the Nipton Road direction. These stakes are for the purpose of hanging netting on to
fence in the existing desert tortoises and to keep the ones on the opposite
side out of the project site.
This, of course, is in anticipation of the final approval
from the California Energy Commission for their license permit, upon receipt of
which, they will begin the BrightSource Energy/ Bechtel Power desert tortoise roundup.

Now note above that the said permit has not been issued, yet. But by putting up the fencing now, they save valuable time, time that can be put to much better use during
the roundup phase. You see they have a small window of time, I am unsure exactly
how much but the details are out there I believe at the Mojave Desert Blog, I would
surf over right now and get the information, but unfortunately there is no net access
at this time, a small amount of time, maybe five or six weeks to get the DT’s rounded up,
dug up, sorted out, catalogued, given their shots and blood work,etc. If they don’t get it
done right now, right after approval, this project will have to be put on hold until next
year. So you see why they are moving with alacrity here. There is a sense of urgency.

Why the big rush, those new to this blog might ask? The answer again is simple. They
are running around like chickens afraid that their heads are about to be whacked off with
EXPIRE 12/31/2010!”
That 1.37 billion dollar federal loan guarantee will be withdrawn
if construction doesn’t start right on schedule. With talk already from members of the
renewable energy community that money is tight as bark on a tree on Wall Street,
even with the feds money, and Congress already having taken some of that money
back already out of the chamber pot, you can take this to the bank, they ain’t
no damned way in hell that the B.S.Er’s are gonna let that damn money go. You

Now some folks are already pointing out the obvious- BrightSource hasn’t been told
the project has been approved yet as there has been no news to that effect anywhere
to be found, yet. Let me point out something here, folks. Most of you probably haven’t
heard of the RETI or the RETI SSC. RETI means renewable energy transmission initiative
and SSC means stakeholder steering committee. Hhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Transmission initiative sounds to me like that has to do with the transmission line infrastructure, and it does, and this was formed for the purpose of facilitating and cutting the
red tape involved with building new or upgrading the old transmission line system for
all those giant renewable energy plants expected to come on line soon. Oh, and by the
way, they really want to streamline and simplify the environmental review process, you
know, break out the big old rubber stamp. You dig? Starting to get the big picture here?

Stakeholder steering committee, what’s up with that? These are all the utility companies
involved, the giant energy companies, the bureaucrats- plus some public interest types
such as a representative for the native americans. These people are in charge of steering
matters related to these giant plants.

Here are a couple of the members you might want to know about. Arthur Haubenstock is
an attorney for BrightSource Energy, a big player in all these going on’s. But my favorite
has to be Johanna Wald from the Natural Resources Defense Council, representing the
public interest allegedly, she of the mindset that we must destroy the desert to save it,
got to keep the carbon emissions down, got to sacrifice, though some will sacrifice much
more than others, just ask the desert tortoises about to be displaced or killed at Ivanpah,
I’m telling you folks, putting this Mizz Wald of the NRDC on this steering committee to
look out for the public’s interest is like asking the wolves to assist in providing safety
for the sheep! You can’t this stuff up, it may sound like it, but it’s all true, all a matter of
public record. I am just amazed that Carl Zichella, formerly of the Sierra Club isn’t on this
committee, although he may be pulling the strings behind the scenes.

I understand Haubenstock’s and others of his kind that are on the committee, they need
to get this thing going, got to get the money rolling in, got to get those bulldozers a moving.
I get it. But it’s the folks like this Mizz Wald that I have a problem with. Somewhere along
the way, I believe they stopped going out to the wilderness or nature, maybe they got too deep in computers, got too deep into the modeling the climate change and global warming
scenarios, they lost their way or maybe they deliberately went into this direction, and tried
to hijack the movement, whatever happened, they and those like her have succeeded
beyond their wildest dreams. Funny and sad isn’t it, how you are not hearing a peep out
of these environmental groups now that the earthmovers are about to fire up soon?

All I can say is that I hope they got their thirty pieces of silver, because this betrayal of the
earth and their fellow environmentalists will leave a lasting legacy for thousands of years,
long after everyone here now is gone and again I reiterate that, in my opinion, I hope their
names elicit feelings of rage and disgust far into the future, because I believe history
will tell the tale and it won’t be a pretty one, and these environmental carbon wonk types,
the ones who should have and did know better, decided to sacrifice nature to reach
some elusive goal, one that to this day has not been definitively proven. One thing for sure,
pretty soon and I am talking in under ten years, you won’t recognize the Mojave, you will
look around and see the giant wind turbines on the ridge tops and the valleys filled with
row after row of solar troughs or stirling engines, with giant transmission lines running hither and thon, row after row, not a plant or animal in sight amongst all this progress-
when you gaze upon all this in the future, just think how different things might have turned out if certain important individuals and groups in the “environmental movement” had not
went over to the side of the industrialists and the polluters, but instead had stayed true
to the ideals of their membership and of their founders, and fought the good fight when they
had the chance to win it.

It isn’t over till it’s over but as Chick Hearn used to say” the butter’s hardening and the
jello is jiggling.” I am afraid Ivanpah’s time is about up.