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Comments about ‘Emerging solar plants scorch birds in mid-air’

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Published: Monday, Aug. 18 2014 8:41 a.m. MDT

Updated: Monday, Aug. 18 2014 8:41 a.m. MDT

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jsf
Centerville, UT

The great benefits of solar and wind renewable energy. Dead birds, how many are killed in oil spills?

Environmental safety at work. The green kings certainly don't tell us about this issue.

GaryO
Virginia Beach, VA

jsf -

"Dead birds, how many are killed in oil spills?"

Millions? Billions?

I'd say quite a lot of birds have been killed in oil spills . . . not to mention in the routine oil production process.

When an oil rig occupies a site, it has a big hole in the ground right next to it called a "reserve pit."

It's full of water to start with, but then becomes filled with shale and chemicals mixed into the drilling fluid and with oil from rig motor oil changes. When the drilling rig leaves and a production rig takes it's place, that pit is still there.

If a duck lands on it, it might be the last time he ever lands on anything, because he's coated with oil and toxic chemicals.

a_voice_of_reason
Woods Cross, UT

Again, let this be a lesson to all those who want humans to leave no environmental impact anywhere on anything while still using the Macs, IPods and IPhones - IT ISN'T POSSIBLE! There is always an impact - no matter what! My opinion, don't try to prevent all losses - just determine how to minimize them. I still believe nuclear power to be one of the best options. After producing approximately 1/5 of U.S energy for several decades the total output includes steam and highly-radioactive waste that could be stored in one moderately-sized storage facility. Find any other energy source with such a low impact on the environment and I'll jump on that train.

Brio
Alpine, UT

@ GaryO:

You are obviously once again pulling figures out thin air in a desperate attempt to prove your liberal agenda. That causes you or anyone else to lose credibility in a big hurry.

For once, Gary, please do some actual research and give us a usable answer to the question you are trying to answer. Your 2 made-up complete guesses are literally a thousand times different from each other and so mean absolutely nothing. It's quite likely they are highly inflated to the real answer, since for years now the reserve pits have been either cleaned or covered up.

Sizable oil spills happen only once in a blue-moon... meaning not very often, and usually multiple years apart.
But this mirror apparatus is killing another bird every 2 minutes all day long 7 days a week, per the article. That equates to tens of thousands of birds each and every year.
It's a pretty safe bet that those effected birds don't consider this to be very clean energy.

Let's take the scenario one step further. How many birds does clean-coal produced power kill in comparison to this solar power project?

Tolstoy
salt lake, UT

@Brio
while I certainly think we should continue to find less destructive ways to get our energy its hard to contend that traditional means of producing energy is superior to wind or solar in this area. I few stats to think about. according to the US fish and wildlife about 2 million birds are killed every year due to oil production in the US, and according to the the New York State Energy resource counsel wind farms are responsible for roughly 0.27 avian fatalities per gigawatt-hour (GWh) of electricity while nuclear power plants involve 0.6 fatalities per GWh and fossil-fueled power stations are responsible for about 9.4 fatalities per GWh. Within the uncertainties of the data used, the estimate means that wind farm-related avian fatalities equated to approximately 46,000 birds in the United States in 2009, but nuclear power plants killed about 460,000 and fossil-fueled power plants 24 million.

Lagomorph
Salt Lake City, UT

Another reason for solar not to follow the nuclear model of centralized production. Centralized production makes sense for nuclear (and fossil fuels as well) because the fuel is very energy dense and it's easier to manage waste products (spent fuel for nuclear, ash and gases for fossil, heat for both) when there are a few large generators.

But solar is a diffuse, low density energy. It's already globally distributed without a grid. Why build infrastructure to gather this diffuse input and concentrate it in one spot, only to turn around and spread it out again to diffuse end users? Why not just locate the collector at the end user and avoid the costs of a distribution system and transmission losses?

Distributed solar, such as individual residential or neighborhood scale installations, avoids many of the costs of overconcentration. The only birds that get baked in a household solar cooker are chickens and Thanksgiving turkeys.

intervention
slc, UT

@Lagomorph
That is such a simple and logical idea.

Mountanman
Hayden, ID

There is no such thing as "green" energy! Hydro electric kills or pervents fish migrations. Solar and wind kills birds. Nuclear energy is dangerous. Wouldn't it be hillarious if the cleanest energy turns out to be fossil fuels because man made global warming is a hoax?

intervention
slc, UT

@moutainman
"Wouldn't it be hillarious if the cleanest energy turns out to be fossil fuels because man made global warming is a hoax?"
Ignoring previous comments to try to be funny is hilarious. As I illustrated above even if global warming was a hoex, alternative energy is still far less destructive then fissile fuels.

RedShirt
USS Enterprise, UT

To "jsf" there are fewer bird killed in oil spills than are killed by this type of solar plant or by wind mills. "Green" power kills more birds and animals than oil does.

To "Lagomorph" this is not a PV array. This system uses light to heat up a sodium solution that allows power to be generated once the sun goes down. There is no way to turn this type of power into a distributed system.

intervention
slc, UT

@redshirt
"Green" power kills more birds and animals than oil does."
Once again no that is not tru, please read previous post that sight the sources that prove your claim are false before re posting the same false claims.

RedShirt
USS Enterprise, UT

To "intervention" ok, lets look at the numbers. Assuming that each month you have a spill like the BP oil spill, you would have approximately 60,000 bird and animal deaths each year. See "BP oil spill: Disaster by numbers". Compared to the 140,000 to 328,000 bird that die each year due to collisions with wind turbines alone. See "How Many Birds Do Wind Turbines Really Kill?" in the Smithsonian. It is 573,000 bird deaths due to wind turbines according to "Wind farms get pass on eagle deaths" in the AP.

The Exxon Valdez oil spill, which is considered one of the worst ever killed 220,000 animals. Each year wind turbines alone are probably killing more than that. Add to that the 28,000 bird deaths that the Center for Biological Diversity estimates are killed yearly by solar power.

The environmentalists screamed at the Exxon Valdez, but now shrug their shoulders when more animals are killed by green power.

intervention
slc, UT

@redshirt
Did you read my post responding to brio? There is no need for "assumptions.". The reasearch is in your claims are false again read the post to bro. Little hint for you though, since this my last post available, assuming that the only environmental impact by oil production and use is due to oil spills is not defective of the reality.

RedShirt
USS Enterprise, UT

To "intervention" you are still wrong. You offer no proof that green energy kills fewer bird than oil spills do. Hint, if you want to consider the entire lifecycle of oil, it will only make the deaths due to green energy go UP. Where do you think the chemicals that are used to make the carbon fiber wind turbine blades come from? How do you think the rare earth metals used in PV arrays are obtained? How do you think they get the metal for the mirrors used in some solar plants?

If you want to consider the entire lifecycle, green energy only becomes more and more dirty the deeper you look into it.

The studies that you quote are highly biased and use questionable data at best. Plus, they are based on research by anti-nuclear and fossil fuel people. What do you expect they would find?

If you look even deeper into the deaths of birds attributed to coal, gas, and nuclear, they include deaths due to global warming. The studies that you have so much faith in have holes so big in them you can drive a 777 through it.

UT Brit
London, England

If people are really concerned about how many birds are killed please write to your representative to create a law making it illegal to keep domesticated cats. Compared to all methods of energy production, cats commit genocide.

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