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$20 Million US Grant for Nevada Solar Power Work

$20 Million US Grant for Nevada Solar Power Work


RENO, Nev. (AP) -- The National Science Foundation has awarded a $20 million grant to Nevada's higher education system to help find ways to make large-scale solar power plants more practical and efficient on arid desert lands.

Sen. Harry Reid announced the grant Monday for the project called, "The Solar Energy-Water-Environment Nexus in Nevada."

The collaborative effort includes the University of Nevada, Reno, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and the Desert Research Institute. The grant is expected to employ at least 100 technicians, students and faculty for five years.

It is part of an experimental program aimed at stimulating competitive research to make solar panels more efficient while minimizing use of water as well as environmental impacts.

Reid says the research will secure Nevada's position as the nation's undisputed leader in clean energy.


Summer Fire Restrictions Go Into Place Saturday

Summer Fire Restrictions Go Into Place Saturday


The summer season brings a change in fire restrictions on Nevada’s public lands, and this season’s rules go into effect Saturday.

On May 11, the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, National Park Service, Nevada Division of Forestry, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Forest Service are implementing fire restrictions in southern Nevada, including Lake Mead National Recreation Area and Red Rock National Conservation Area.

Agencies will offer several media availability opportunities to discuss these restrictions, last year’s fire statistics and predicted forecast for this year:

Fire restrictions prohibit:

Colorado River Named Most Endangered River in America

Colorado River Named Most Endangered River in America


A coalition of environmental groups named the Colorado River as the most endangered river in America.

The announcement came Wednesday morning at the Las Vegas Boat Harbor at Lake Mead.

According to American, Rivers, Nuestro Rio, Protect the Flows and the National Young Farmers Coalition, there is too much demand on the Colorado River and not enough effort to reduce water use throughout the Southwest.  

The groups are calling on Congress to initiate a region-wide plan to conserve water from the Colorado River.

"It is not too late. Not all is lost. We are at a critical junction where we can all come together and ensure that it does not get worse," Andres Ramirez, the state director for Nuestro Rio, said. 

Report and Video Shows a Healthy Lake Mead

Report and Video Shows a Healthy Lake Mead

A new report shows Lake Mead has a healthy and robust ecosystem.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the lake's water quality is good, the populations of sports fish are sufficient and more birds are calling the area home.

The report was done to better understand the resources at Lake Mead and Lake Mohave. Better knowledge of the lake makes it easier for the National Park Service to manage resources.

The USGS didn't just release a report, it also released an accompanying video. The video shows just how important scientific research is to guiding management of water, power and recreation. 

To watch the video, go to gallery.usgs.gov

BLM Approves Solar Power Transmission Lines

BLM Approves Solar Power Transmission Lines


The Bureau of Land Management has granted a right-of-way for transmission lines for a solar project in Boulder City.

The approval will allow Techren Solar to build transmission lines on 98 acres of federal lane along an existing transmission corridor. The lines will connect Techren’s proposal solar facility, which is on private land in Boulder City, to the Eldorado and Marketplace substations, and then the transmission grid.

Techren’s proposed plant would generate about 300 megawatts of photovoltaic solar energy, which is enough to power 75,000 single-family homes.

The approval comes after the bureau finished an environmental analysis of the project. 

Public Meetings to be Held on Lake Mohave's Future

Public Meetings to be Held on Lake Mohave's Future


The future of Lake Mohave will be the subject of a series of upcoming public meetings hosted by the National Park Service.

Meeting will be held April 9-11 to present alternatives to the Cottonwood Cove and Katherine Landing Development Concept Plans/Environmental Impact Statement at Lake Mead National Recreation Area.

The meetings will be held from 4-6 p.m. at the following locations:

Controlled Burns Planned for Lake Mead


The National Park Service is planning two controlled burns over the next two weeks in the Lake Mead Recreation Area.

One burn will be in a five-acre area east of Cottonwood Cove in Arizona. The second burn will be a two-acre area near Las Vegas Bay.

Shrubs and grass will be burned to restore the natural landscape and to reduce wildfire hazards. The dates of the burns will be determined by the weather, but they will happen during the week when few people are visiting the park.

If people want to watch the burn operations, they should stay at least 200 feet away. Fire personnel will on site to monitor the burns.