Residents in Moapa Nevada, north of Las Vegas on I-15, strongly oppose a 9,000+ acre 850 MW solar PV installation on the Mormon Mesa. The Mesa is currently for used recreation and tourism, an important part of their economy.
This opposition is unusual in that it is not just the usual enviro NIMBYs. Instead, it is also locals who live in Moapa with businesses who fear the project will block access to public lands and spoil the view, hurting crucial tourism.
As is usual with big solar in Nevada, all the power goes to California. So after it is built, it’s difficult to see what the “robust economic benefits” that Nevada Governor Sisolak promises would be. Solar PV projects require very few employees once operational.
The site is in a pristine area just north of where the Muddy and Virgin Rivers flow into the northernmost part of Lake Mead.
From Nevada Current:
““Our mesa is a highly used recreational area,” said Childs. “There’s a lot of tourism there and it has increased over the years and it just shows the popularity of the mesa. The views up there are phenomenal. It’s one of those things you just have to see to understand it’s value.”
Moapa Valley Chamber of Commerce President Vanette Christensen strongly opposed the project.
“I support having solar fields and great energy products, but not next to a residential area,” Christensen said at the November meeting. “The problem for us is business-wise. We were impacted when the lake dropped, it closed businesses. This will do the same.”