Graduation Year

Fall 2010

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Environment, Economics, and Politics (EEP)

Reader 1

J. Emil Morhardt


For more than two centuries, humans have been spewing “greenhouse gases” into the atmosphere through the burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, and the development of land, causing the planet’s surface temperature to increase at an accelerated rate. Climate change is one of the most pressing issues that the world is facing today, and in order to combat the effects of climate change, it is necessary to adopt the use of more renewable technology, namely solar energy. The United States' best region for solar development is the Mojave Desert, and many large-scale projects are being built or proposed to be built in the area. However, the deployment of solar technology in the Mojave Desert comes with significant ecological, socioeconomic, and political impacts. This paper is intended to provide an overview of the issues surrounding solar development in the Mojave Desert.