Proposed Mojave Desert solar plant scrapped

ILE This Sept.3, 2008 file photo shows high-voltage power lines cross adjacent to the proposed location of three BrightSource Energy solar-energy generation complexes in the eastern Mojave Desert several miles from an old mining and railroad townsite called Ivanpah, Calif. The casino-resort area of Primm, Nev., is seen in the distance. The Oakland, Calif.-based BrightSource Energy has been pushing for more than two years for permission to erect 400,000 mirrors on the site to gather the sun's energy. It could become the first project of its kind on U.S. Bureau of Land Management property, leaving a footprint for others to follow on vast stretches of public land across the West. (Reed Saxon,File)

June 25, 2013 12:40:54 AM PDT
The sun has set on a proposed solar energy plant in the Southern California desert.

The K Road Calico Solar Project would have covered as many as six square miles of land with solar panels east of Barstow. The project could have generated enough electricity for 250,000 homes.

Environmentalists sued, saying the development would have damaged habitat for threatened species including the desert tortoise and bighorn sheep.

The Riverside Press-Enterprise says the developer sent a letter to the California Energy Commission last Friday surrendering its license for the development, citing "changed market conditions."

It's the second solar project dropped in the past six months in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. BrightSource Energy Co. abandoned a planned 12-square-mile solar installation near Blythe in January because of cost issues.