Enormous Ivanpah solar power plant in California could be shut down

Ivanpah Solar Power Facility

Plant not meeting contractual terms, not producing enough electricity

The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, one of the largest solar plants in the world, is in danger of being shut down due to poor production.

The plant was financed in part with $1.5 billion in federal loans. Despite the sizable investment, Ivanpah has yet to meet its lofty power-generation goals.

State regulators are threatening to force the plant to go dark, as the massive installation isn’t producing as much electricity as it is contractually obligated to.

About the Ivanpah

The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System lies in the Mojave Desert in San Bernardino County, California, close to the Nevada border. It has a gross capacity of 392 megawatts, and is currently the world's largest solar thermal power station.

Bird deaths

The Ivanpah plant is not new to controversy. Environmental advocates have long been concerned about the strange phenomenon of birds burning to death at the facility, which is further clouding the future of the power plant.

There have been multiple reports of birds “evaporating” from the extreme heat produced by the installation, and officials are both investigating the recurring incidents and working on possible solutions.

Photo Credit: Photo by Jllm06 / CC BY-SA 4.0