In order to end America's dependence on dirty, polluting energy like coal, we need to quickly expand all kinds of clean energy—from solar panels on homes to large-scale wind and solar projects located in places like the California desert.
Any large energy project brings potential to harm the wildlife and wild places the Sierra Club has worked to protect for more than a century. That's why we are working hard to ensure that the large clean energy projects we desperately need are built in the best possible way—ensuring minimal damage to wildlife such as desert tortoises and golden eagles. The Sierra Club has worked closely with wildlife agencies and responsible developers to reconfigure energy projects and identify solutions to wildlife conflicts, and we will continue to do so.
Projects that are “Smart from the Start” are built on land that is already developed or disturbed—near roads and transmission lines, on degraded farmland, or similar lands. They're designed to minimize conflict with sensitive plants and animals.
Developing large clean energy projects carefully won't always be easy—but it couldn’t be more important. If we don't ramp up clean sources of energy quickly, we won't be able to curb climate disruption—the single greatest threat to wildlife and wild places. As the nation's oldest grassroots environmental organization, we have a responsibility and an important opportunity—to make sure that we get clean energy right, from the start.