Californian Solar Panel Canals. Source The Register, Fair Use, Low Resolution Image to Identify the Subject.

California to Cover Canals With Toxic Solar Panels

Essay by Eric Worrall

Solar panels, which contain dangerous toxins like Lead, Cadmium, Arsenic and toxic plastics, are to be installed as covers for California’s water supply canals.

California to try tackling drought with canal-top solar panels

Watt an interesting idea

Brandon Vigliarolo

California is ready to try out something that could help it save water and generate electricity at the same time: solar panels over irrigation canals.

For this proof-of-concept experiment, some 8,500 feet of photovoltaic panels will be installed over waterways just north of Turlock, central California, generating electricity while preventing water from evaporating away.

This $20 million state-funded pilot program has been dubbed Project Nexus, and will by run by Turlock Irrigation District (TID), a nonprofit water and power utility, along with its partners. If it’s a success, it could well be deployed across more of America’s Golden State.

Read more: https://www.theregister.com/2022/08/31/california_solar_power_canals/

Solar panels are so toxic, disposal is a serious issue. From the US EPA;

Are Solar Panels Hazardous Waste?

Hazardous waste testing on solar panels in the marketplace has indicated that different varieties of solar panels have different metals present in the semiconductor and solder. Some of these metals, like lead and cadmium, are harmful to human health and the environment at high levels. If these metals are present in high enough quantities in the solar panels, solar panel waste could be a hazardous waste under RCRA. Some solar panels are considered hazardous waste, and some are not, even within the same model and manufacturer. Homeowners with solar panels on their houses should contact their state/local recycling agencies for more information on disposal/recycling. 

Overview of Hazardous Waste Regulations

Federal solid and hazardous waste regulations (i.e., the RCRA requirements) apply to solar panels when they are discarded. When a solar panel reaches the end of its usable life or is otherwise discarded, it becomes solid waste. Solid waste is regulated federally under RCRA Subtitle D and through state and local government programs.

Read more: https://www.epa.gov/hw/end-life-solar-panels-regulations-and-management

I don’t know if sufficient quantities of Lead, Cadmium, Arsenic and other more exotic toxins could leach into the water to constitute a health hazard. But who in their right mind would want to take such a risk?

Roofing hundreds of miles of waterways with covers which contain dangerous chemicals, and can potentially leach those dangerous chemicals into the water supply, is not my idea of a sensible plan. A low level of leaching might add up to a serious problem over a long enough distance. Even if the leach rate is initially low, as the panels deteriorate, or are vandalised, the rate at which nasty chemicals enter the water supply could accelerate to dangerous levels.

Lets just say if California goes forward with this ridiculous plan, deliberately placing deadly toxins in close proximity to their household and agricultural water supply, I’m going to start checking the produce labels more carefully in the future when I go shopping.

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tgasloli
September 1, 2022 6:13 pm

We need a study on the effect of sunshine on cognitive decline. Californians are just dumb.

KcTaz
Reply to  tgasloli
September 1, 2022 8:32 pm

Maybe, but I suspect all the drugs consumed there may have more to do with their dumbness than the sunshine. After all, Florida has a lot of sunshine and none of the stupidity, excluding Democrats there, and some major corporations doing business in that State.

Last edited 1 month ago by KcTaz
Bryan A
Reply to  KcTaz
September 1, 2022 9:51 pm

In many cases, produce watered downstream from solar panel covered portions of the aqua duct as well as Low Angeles Water Supply will need to carry Prop 65 warning labels

meiggs
Reply to  KcTaz
September 3, 2022 5:55 am

MSM is in FL to, much worse than drugs, meanwhile Duke Energy erecting solar farms in FL, not sure if tax subsidized but in parallel they demolished two big coal units at crystal river

IanE
Reply to  tgasloli
September 2, 2022 3:17 am

Nah it’s just Dumbocracy!

Dave
Reply to  tgasloli
September 2, 2022 1:59 pm

Well, let’s be fair here. A large part of California’s population isn’t dumb, but a larger percentage of it is, which means the smart ones have little to no voice in decision-making and policy-making. We lived there for the better part of a decade and were first amazed, then merely disgusted, by the stupidity of the state government, but we had to be there for our jobs. About all we miss about SoCal is the weather. 

KevinM
Reply to  tgasloli
September 6, 2022 9:47 am

I can’t believe what I just read about shutting down Diablo Canyon before the ev mandate. So many really smart people live there, I wish one of them could explain it. The plant is over 40 years old and still about 10 percent of the state’s energy.

Gyan1
September 1, 2022 6:35 pm

“I don’t know if sufficient quantities of Lead, Cadmium, Arsenic and other more exotic toxins could leach into the water to constitute a health hazard.”

If they are using silicon cells not thin film there shouldn’t be any toxins entering the water.

If Big Pharma has any influence they will use thin film so that lead and cadmium can get into the food supply.

Bryan A
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 1, 2022 10:04 pm

Silver solder used to contain lead (now Silver 65%, Copper 20% and Zinc 15%). It wouldn’t surprise me if those made in China still contain Lead. They’re are reports if China putting Cadmium in their fashion jewelry to feel like silver weight wise.

ozspeaksup
Reply to  Bryan A
September 2, 2022 2:54 am

lol like the gold bars that were coated tungsten found in usa fort knox? and elsewhere

Robertvd
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 2:20 am

Now think of a big hail storm.

Violent hail storm in La Bisbal d’Empordà, Catalonia, Spain

griff
Reply to  Robertvd
September 2, 2022 4:05 am

A violent climate change fuelled hail storm? Broken solar panels don’t leak stuff any more than unbroken ones

DaveS
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 5:18 am

A violent climate change fuelled hail storm”
No, just a hail storm.
“Broken solar panels don’t leak stuff any more than unbroken ones”
And you know that because? If the outer layer is fractured allowing water contact with the internals, then it’s entirely possible for leaching of toxic substances to increase.

Gunga Din
Reply to  DaveS
September 2, 2022 2:27 pm

DaveS, you just don’t realize, like griff does, that hail and rain and floods and blizzards and hurricanes and … weather, didn’t exist before “CAGW” and/or “Climate Change”.
(The claim the cause is CAGW or Climate Change depends on the weather.)

MarkW
Reply to  DaveS
September 2, 2022 7:50 pm

Don’t forget that because of the CO2 in the air, rainwater is highly acidic. Leach? They’re lucky the panels don’t dissolve.
/sarc

London Broil
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 5:48 am

A violent climate change fuelled hail storm?

Hahaha… After reading several of your posts, I imagine you are a lot like that Peter Kalmus character, the modern day Cassandra. Do you see climate change everywhere you look?

Tim Gorman
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 7:27 am

How in the name of Pete are you going to clean the little broken pieces out of the canal? Are you just going to let them “float”(?) down the canal to clog up the filters at the water treatment plant?

Do you *ever* try to look at the big picture?

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 9:53 am

griff,
You seem to imply there were be no hail violent storms were it not for “climate change”.

Got any facts to go with that?

Moreover, what’s your specific definition of “climate change”?

MarkW
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 7:49 pm

Are you claiming that there were no violent hail storms prior to around 1860? Historical documents disagree.

Kenji
Reply to  Robertvd
September 2, 2022 10:12 am

Ohhhhhh mommmmaaa … EXTREME weather caused by global warming and your sinful capitalist lifestyle. LOOk at what you’ve done! /sarc

Drake
Reply to  Robertvd
September 2, 2022 10:33 am

the only reasonable use for solar panels, to protect roof tiles from hail damage.

auto
Reply to  Robertvd
September 2, 2022 2:00 pm

Robertvd
Indeed.
Or a decent wind [I guess Kalifornia gets wind] . . . .

Auto

Last edited 1 month ago by auto
griff
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 4:04 am

Yes Eric – but they don’t wash out of the panels, do they?

DaveS
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 5:23 am

And you know that because? It actually depends on what materials are exposed.

goracle
Reply to  griff
September 5, 2022 12:02 am

griff out with another whopper showing his mental abilities

Last edited 28 days ago by goracle
Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 7:00 am

Only in trace amounts (boron and phosphorus):

https://www.halbleiter.org/en/fundamentals/doping/

Eisenhower
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 12:48 pm

This is a typical CA project, all sizzle no steak. The local irrigation district is doing project because it looks good when they are in Sacramento. It is not cost effective, evaperation reduction will be insignicant and toxicity is not an issue on this project.

They are doing a small section and no further projects will be done covering canals due to added costs on O&M. This project is only for is public relations value.

Eisenhower
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 12:58 pm

Also this project is next to a residential area and every house’s strom drain system dumps into the canals. Hundreds of houses in area have solar panels already and runoff from them drains into canals. It’s a dumb, expensive project but insignificant

KcTaz
Reply to  Gyan1
September 1, 2022 7:30 pm

I know nothing about this but if they are using arsenic in making the silicon used in panels, would that not be a hazard if it gets into the drinking water and our food supply? I know nothing about the effects of gallium which may, also, be used in solar panels per this article but I do know arsenic doesn’t sound good.
Why is silicon used for making solar cells?
https://solartechadvisor.com/silicon-use-solar-panels/SOLAR PANELS 

1. Silicon is a semiconductor
Because it is a semiconductor material at its core, pure crystalline silicon is a poor conductor of electricity.
To overcome this issue, the silicon in a solar cell contains impurities, which are other atoms that are purposely mixed in with the silicon atoms to improve silicon’s capacity to capture and convert the sun’s energy into electricity.

For example, a gallium atom has one fewer electron than a silicon atom, but an arsenic atom has one more electron. When arsenic atoms are sandwiched between many silicon atoms, the structure gains extra electrons, resulting in the formation of an electron-rich layer.
The layers in a solar cell are arranged so that an electric field is formed. When sunlight strikes a solar cell, it stimulates electrons, which cause holes to form.
Because of the presence of an electric field, they move to the cell’s electrodes. Electricity is produced in this method.
Semiconductors have qualities that are intermediate between those of a conductor and an insulator. It possesses an electrical characteristic that allows it to be conductive in one direction while being insulating in the other…

Last edited 1 month ago by KcTaz
Laws of Nature
Reply to  KcTaz
September 1, 2022 8:59 pm

This question seems simple: look at solar panels after 20 or 50 years .. If they still there and working (they are), there has not been much leaking.

JohnM
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 1, 2022 10:17 pm

How do you know? Have you done any tests: has anybody else?

ozspeaksup
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 2:57 am

the corrosion from the aluminium edge frames is noticeable and thats going into peoples rainwater here in aus, as well as stormdrains

mal
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 11:22 am

No they are not after 30 years the are trash the sun would have destroyed them solar cell in cheap lawn lamps last about three years here in Arizona and mot of the plastic turn brittle.  It seem funny the first time you pick up a 5 gallon bucket and it shatters but is just turns into a pain.  Plastic bag turn to powder.

pls
Reply to  mal
September 2, 2022 9:07 pm

It can get more interesting. I remember the time I picked up a gallon bottle of concentrated muriatic acid to pour some into the pool. The jug shattered, covering my whole lower body with acid.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 2:31 pm

50 year old solar panels (for grid power, not my old calculator) that are still working?
Over a canal?
Where are they?

Sturmudgeon
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 2:52 pm

I have a single solar panel constructed of 2 sections about 2 ft. square, which I have had since about 1985,(and I bought it used) but do not use any longer… but it still registers strong on a meter. Occasionally, for fun, I hook it up to batteries to charge them.

MarkW
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 7:59 pm

They may be working, but they are only generating a few percent of the amount of electricity they were producing when brand new.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  KcTaz
September 2, 2022 7:03 am

There are no commercial modules sold that use GaAs solar cells that I am aware of, they are way too expensive and could never compete with crystalline silicon. The market for III-V semiconductors is in space power.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  KcTaz
September 2, 2022 10:01 am

Look to the bigger picture:

“The first, lead, is widely used for soldering electronic components together. Each standard solar panel contains about 14 grams of lead. That means about 4,400 tons of lead were used to make the 92 GW of solar panels installed in 2018.”
— source: https://www.freeingenergy.com/are-solar-panels-really-full-of-toxic-materials-like-cadmium-and-lead/

Lead . . . just the thing we need to be distributing throughout the environment, especially above canals that distribute potable water to millions of people.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  KcTaz
September 2, 2022 8:40 pm

Galium arsenide is a valent semiconductor, it takes a lot of energy to unbind them. It is also uber-expensive while silicon is uber-cheap.

KevinM
Reply to  KcTaz
September 6, 2022 9:57 am

Made in China.

Kenji
Reply to  Gyan1
September 2, 2022 10:09 am

Perhaps this will keep the illegal Mexicans who don’t know how to swim from entering the canals. Check the news … constant drownings in the canals. Constant.

Sturmudgeon
Reply to  Kenji
September 2, 2022 3:00 pm

No, the plan is to give them a jolt. BTW, I think the majority of illegals coming in now are from several different Countries.

Farmerphil
September 1, 2022 6:59 pm

The products you mention are in a solid state when incorporated into a solar panel and cannot be leached.

gbaikie
Reply to  Farmerphil
September 1, 2022 7:16 pm

So, they can be submerged in water?

Scissor
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 1, 2022 9:00 pm

Would be interesting to know if TCLP tests have been done on the panels they propose to use.
https://dtsc.ca.gov/tclp-and-wet-test-methods/

griff
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 4:07 am

They don’t, do they? Or rain would wash them out… are you saying rain washes chemicals out of panels?

DaveS
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 5:37 am

You clearly have no clue what you are talking about. Low-level leaching can occur over time from a lot of materials. Whether it’s enough to be a problem is the more important question. All materials intended to be in contact with drinking water have been subjected to leaching tests for that very reason. Rainwater is weakly acidic which might, or might not, influence leaching rate, depending on the material.

ResourceGuy
Reply to  DaveS
September 2, 2022 10:07 am

Maybe you should ask yourself about all the testing and research documentation that went into this tech certification in the U.S. and EU.
Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells | Photovoltaic Research | NREL

Editor
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 8:12 am

Water is a SOLVENT which is why it can take down mountains and smooth rocks over time, cut river channels even make new ones too

Slowroll
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 9:03 am

This idea is OK, but all the envirowackos are berserk about lead solder joints in plumbing?

ResourceGuy
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 10:04 am

You are correct in the case of semiconductor bonding with chemical vapor deposition bonds and layering. That’s why the EU agrees with EPA that CdTe is NOT a health hazard in this tested semiconductor product. Not sure about all the other panel products though. Eric needs to read more.
Cadmium Telluride Solar Cells | Photovoltaic Research | NREL

Bryan A
Reply to  ResourceGuy
September 2, 2022 11:01 am

Top 10 Countries That Produce the Most Solar Power (Megawatts, 2021):
China – 306,973.
United States – 95,209.
Japan – 74,191.
Germany – 58,461.
India – 49,684.
Italy – 22,698.
Australia – 19,076.
South Korea – 18,161

China produces almost 50% of the total panels manufactured by the top 10 producers. What type of panels do they produce for global consumption?

KevinM
Reply to  Bryan A
September 6, 2022 10:14 am

Yes. The biggest pollution is externalized – to a place with lax environmental regulations, child labor and ethnic persecution?

See also: China’s solar power equipment exports also surged … despite tariffs and trade sanctions from the United States, India and Europe.

Tariffs on a subsidized product? Weird.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  ResourceGuy
September 2, 2022 8:42 pm

Correct.

ResourceGuy
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 2, 2022 9:59 am
Janice Moore
Reply to  ResourceGuy
September 2, 2022 1:54 pm

The point is that the risk is not worth the benefit (not whether undamaged/brand new solar photovoltaic cells are likely to poison anyone). Risk of damaged (broken by hail or earthquakes or by installers/removers, for instance) cells poisoning people is the issue, here.

The location is the key to Mr. Worrall’s point — directly over water used to irrigate food.

Facts:

1. It is highly certain that a given % of cells over the canals will be damaged or need removal.

2. Defunct solar PV cells are hazardous waste, much of which was carcinogenic cadmium-contaminated waste. ***

They also contain lead, cadmium, and other toxic (even carcinogenic) chemicals … Worse, rainwater can wash many of these toxics out of the fragments of solar modules over time.

(https://www.cfact.org/2019/09/15/the-solar-panel-toxic-waste-problem/ )

While your reading material may be of interest to Mr. Worrall, it is not necessary to his case:

putting solar PV cells over irrigation canals is not worth the risk (and likely has a negative ROI, too).

KevinM
Reply to  Janice Moore
September 6, 2022 10:16 am

Precautionary principal.
Negative ROI sounds bad.

HotScot
Reply to  Farmerphil
September 2, 2022 1:28 am

And Covid vaccines are safe and effective………….

Reply to  Farmerphil
September 2, 2022 1:31 am

So, going to install lead pipe in your house? It’s solid, after all!
Water dissolves just about anything.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Farmerphil
September 2, 2022 2:41 pm

Water is known as “The Universal Solvent”. It will dissolve a little bit of just about anything it comes in contact with.
I have an old edition of “Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater”.
On the inside of the cover are instructions for making “reagent grade” water to mix with a powder to make a reagent to be used in the lab.
You start with distilled water.
(There were further instruction to take the reagent grade water and make it “CO2 Free” water.)

Gunga Din
Reply to  Gunga Din
September 2, 2022 2:49 pm

OH! I forgot that this was California, the land of perpetual drought AND perpetual flooding.
How dumb is it to put solar panels over a water canal?
Did they do an Environmental Impact Study to see what effect cutting off sunlight will have on the Three Spotted Canal Smelt?
(OK, I made up the fish. But real fish and plants will be impacted. Why don’t they matter?)

Last edited 1 month ago by Gunga Din
rhs
September 1, 2022 7:01 pm

I hope that mandatory water quality testing is part of this initiative.
I’d hate for this to turn in to another Flint MI situation.

mothcatcher
Reply to  rhs
September 2, 2022 1:43 am

Agreed. I wouldn’t be too concerned re the toxicity issue. There are plenty enough rules and checks to be fairly sure no great disasters will ensue. On the face of it, the project seems a good idea, as long as it isn’t mandated widely by the state government.

And as long as the waterways thus covered don’t have any major wildlife issues. A canal in a tunnel is going to have very different flora and fauna to a canal in the open.

Drake
Reply to  rhs
September 2, 2022 10:37 am

I don’t really care as long as:

1) No “federal” funds are used to subside this crap.
2) No “federal” funds are used to clean up the mess, either environmental or financial.

Let California alone pay for their stupidity.

KcTaz
September 1, 2022 7:08 pm

I’m no expert but I suspect hail falling on solar panels suspended over water may well send many shards of glass along with toxic chemicals into the canal. Even if hail is rare, it only needs to happen once to destroy a whole bunch of expensive and toxic solar panels.
Calif. better hope some of their many nutters don’t decide it’s fun to see how many solar panels they can crush with rocks.

Hail storm surprises Southern California residents with an inch of accumulation
A thunderstorm brought more than just rain to Pasadena, California.
Associated Press Associated Press, USA TODAY
2/16/22
https://www.usatoday.com/videos/news/weather/2022/02/16/rare-hail-storm-surprises-california-residents/6812916001/

Last edited 1 month ago by KcTaz
JohnM
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 1, 2022 10:19 pm

Boys with stones would, I suggest, be a bigger problem.

London Broil
Reply to  JohnM
September 2, 2022 5:54 am

I would suspect men with tools would be an even bigger problem. Miles and miles of canals covered in solar panels just waiting to be stolen and resold.

Drake
Reply to  London Broil
September 2, 2022 10:38 am

Just the copper wiring would be most likely to be stolen. At night, of course, when there is no current, and no one to see you.

KevinM
Reply to  Drake
September 6, 2022 10:19 am

Was amazed by non-functional Texas restaurant AC units – copper pipes stolen.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  JohnM
September 3, 2022 8:17 am

Thinking exactly the same thing myself when I came to your post.

Robertvd
Reply to  KcTaz
September 2, 2022 2:23 am

Violent hail storm in La Bisbal d’Empordà, Catalonia, Spain

Eisenhower
Reply to  KcTaz
September 2, 2022 12:35 pm

Hail is not an issue in Turlock. In 50 years here never has hail larger than a BB. Hails here very slightly once every 4-6 years here.

dk_
September 1, 2022 7:10 pm

Of course, these are magic PV panels, made by gnomes.They don’t require megatonns of cheap fossil fuels as inexpensive raw materials, or affordable power for manufactuging, infrastructure, transportation,or maintenance. Most specially, with the so certain long term climate forecast of increasingly more severe and frequent weather events, they are unsusceptable to damage, and work even under clouds and dust storms.
Next week, more magic batteries. 

Last edited 1 month ago by dk_
KcTaz
Reply to  dk_
September 1, 2022 9:00 pm

Yep,
Mines, Minerals, and “Green” Energy: A Reality Check 
https://bit.ly/3eeyZon
https://www.manhattan-institute.org/mines-minerals-and-green-energy-reality-check
EXCERPT:

Among the material realities of green energy:

  • Building wind turbines and solar panels to generate electricity, as well as batteries to fuel electric vehicles, requires, on average, more than 10 times the quantity of materials, compared with building machines using hydrocarbons to deliver the same amount of energy to society.
  • A single electric car contains more cobalt than 1,000 smartphone batteries; the blades on a single wind turbine have more plastic than 5 million smartphones; and a solar array that can power one data center uses more glass than 50 million phones.
  • Replacing hydrocarbons with green machines under current plans—never mind aspirations for far greater expansion—will vastly increase the mining of various critical minerals around the world. For example, a single electric car battery weighing 1,000 pounds requires extracting and processing some 500,000 pounds of materials. Averaged over a battery’s life, each mile of driving an electric car “consumes” five pounds of earth. Using an internal combustion engine consumes about 0.2 pounds of liquids per mile.
  • Oil, natural gas, and coal are needed to produce the concrete, steel, plastics, and purified minerals used to build green machines. The energy equivalent of 100 barrels of oil is used in the processes to fabricate a single battery that can store the equivalent of one barrel of oil.
  • By 2050, with current plans, the quantity of worn-out solar panels—much of it nonrecyclable—will constitute double the tonnage of all today’s global plastic waste, along with over 3 million tons per year of unrecyclable plastics from worn-out wind turbine blades. By 2030, more than 10 million tons per year of batteries will become garbage.

July 9, 2020

DaveS
Reply to  KcTaz
September 2, 2022 5:40 am

Someone recently proposed making wind turbine blades from edible resins, so maybe edible PV cells is part of the answer 😉

KevinM
Reply to  KcTaz
September 6, 2022 10:23 am

Apply critical thought to the statement “ The energy equivalent of 100 barrels of oil is used in the processes to fabricate a single battery that can store the equivalent of one barrel of oil.

KcTaz
Reply to  KevinM
September 8, 2022 12:03 am

I have seen that figure used by multiple sources. So how much do you say is the equivalent energy to fabricate a battery to a barrel of oil? Mind you, this figure includes the mining and processing of the earth to get the rare earth metals out of the ground and separated, along with everything else that must be done to get a battery built. I will be interested in seeing your calculation for it.

H. D. Hoese
September 1, 2022 7:12 pm

I have a little experience with construction planning and dealt with architects and engineers that know about unintended consequences. Yes, evaporation is a problem, and this might appear to get around habitat concerns. What could go wrong? Of course, those designing renewables don’t do their homework. How do you manage such a long electrical supply. Water and electricity don’t mix very well. Quite an experiment.

jono1066
Reply to  H. D. Hoese
September 2, 2022 3:08 am

BUT
I thought water was a good conductor ?
just put an insulated wall down the middle of the canal and hey presto you have your power line. Of course positive would be on the left

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  jono1066
September 2, 2022 6:23 am

Actually, pure water is a rather poor conductor of electricity.  Adding salt increases its conductivity, but it’s still not like a copper bus bar.

Stephen Mueller
September 1, 2022 7:20 pm

Given the above, should houses that collect rainwater off their roofs have solar panels on those same roofs.

H B
Reply to  Stephen Mueller
September 1, 2022 7:27 pm

no heavy metal toxic accumulative toxin

ozspeaksup
Reply to  Stephen Mueller
September 2, 2022 3:03 am

no! they should be along fencelines etc or freestanding so they can be seen and cleaned and easier to watch for damage

Gunga Din
Reply to  Stephen Mueller
September 2, 2022 3:27 pm

To water the ornamental plants or the lawn? OK.
To drink or water a garden?
It might be safer to eat your compost pile. 😎

Gunga Din
Reply to  Gunga Din
September 2, 2022 3:29 pm

PS Solar stuff aside, don’t forget what birds doo.

Rob_Dawg
September 1, 2022 7:25 pm

They are not only not toxic but just beig there keeps particulates out of the flow and is a good thing. Even broken and falling into the water, quantities versus flow are way too disparate. A few days or weeks or months versus billions of gallons isn’t going to leach.

No. The real issue is 8500 feet for $20 million dollars. Unaffordable.

HotScot
Reply to  Rob_Dawg
September 2, 2022 1:37 am

You can’t put a price on saving the planet.

Old Cocky
Reply to  Rob_Dawg
September 2, 2022 1:59 am

The excerpt doesn’t say if that’s linear feet or square feet, and neither does the article. Assuming the roof over the channel is 20′ wide, that’s only 425” long, which isn’t going to reduce evaporation very much.
At best (linear feet) it’s just over a mile and a half long, which would be some use.

Of course, if the channel is just earth, seepage is going to be quite a problem as well.

There are definitely cheaper ways to reduce evaporation in open channels, so the viability will depend on how much electricity it produces.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Old Cocky
September 2, 2022 6:35 am

The canals, as measured via Google, appear to be about 60′ wide.  so 60X8500 is 510,000 square feet.  The rule of thumb is about 9 watts per square foot, or 9×510,000 or 4,590,000 watts, or 4.59 megawatts.  This is about $4.36/watt installed, which isn’t bad for solar.  A CCGT plant is about half that, and nuclear would be about 1.5 times.  On the other hand, gas and nuclear don’t shut down at night.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Old Cocky
September 3, 2022 4:11 pm

It will just make the CA duck-curve problem worse.

H B
September 1, 2022 7:30 pm

” the dose makeith the poison ” except for heavy metals
Also hope there are – no fish in that canel than anyone eats

HotScot
Reply to  H B
September 2, 2022 1:38 am

How can they catch fish when the canal is covered in SP’s?

2% Milk
Reply to  H B
September 2, 2022 4:15 am

People fish in the canal regularly. There’s also a mountain of assorted trash thrown into the canals so the toxins concern is a little thin. Nobody is going to get sick from solar panel leaching. But the people of California will get yet more poor from this engineering nightmare that’s guaranteed to have a negative return on investment.

Gunga Din
Reply to  2% Milk
September 2, 2022 3:31 pm

The solar train to nowhere!

ACParker
September 1, 2022 7:53 pm

The idea fits my position that solar is best implemented on rooftops and parking lots. Covering open canals with solar panels should reduce evaporative losses, so it could be a win-win. I’m not sure how the installers and maintenance folks would feel about being over water. Corrosion would likely increase as well. I seem to remember someone proposing floating solar panels on lakes and reservoirs. The same caveats applied about corrosion and mixing high voltage with water.

KcTaz
Reply to  ACParker
September 1, 2022 8:44 pm

There are a number of other problems with solar.

Solar energy may have caused California’s wildfires
https://washex.am/2SVbaLB

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/solar-energy-may-have-caused-californias-wildfires
 Then, there’s this, too.

Solar energy may have caused California’s wildfires
https://washex.am/2SVbaLB

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/solar-energy-may-have-caused-californias-wildfires

Solar energy may have caused California’s wildfires
by Kevin Mooney | March 04, 2019 12:59 PM
Taxpayer-subsidized, ratepayer-funded utilities that may be on the hook for billions of dollars in liabilities point to climate change as the major factor standing behind the recent California wildfires. PG&E CEO Geisha Williams has argued that dry, arid conditions associated with global warming were to blame for wildfires that devastated parts of northern California in 2018. Edison International CEO Pedro Pizarro has said much of the same with regard to the wildfires of 2017 that ignited in the southern part of the state.
But what if the blame belongs not with climate change, but with climate change policies that the utilities and their benefactors in government favor? There’s some evidence for this that insurance companies and displaced California residents might be interested in learning more about. As taxpayers and utility ratepayers, they are all spending part of their workday financing solar energy schemes that may have led to high-pressure conditions affecting electrical equipment, which in turn sparked the fires. How’s that?
Let’s look at just one example going back to December 2017, when wildfires devastated portions of Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. At the time, what became known as the Thomas Fire was the largest wildfire in California’s history. The fire erupted on Dec. 4, 2017, in the Santa Paula Canyon area just south of Thomas Aquinas College a little before 6:30 p.m., according to reports from the Ventura County Fire Department.
The latest figures show the Thomas Fire burned more than 280,000 acres before it was finally contained on Jan. 12, 2018. The fire destroyed more than 1,000 structures including hundreds of homes…

Bryan A
Reply to  KcTaz
September 1, 2022 10:07 pm

The spot on Tubbs Lane where the 2017 Tubbs Fire started was at a property with more then 100 panels that supposedly had shorting issues

Laws of Nature
Reply to  ACParker
September 1, 2022 9:04 pm

There is no high voltage with solar panels

Dave Gee
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 12:08 am

Entirely wrong – typical domestic array can be up to 500V, typical commercial array around 1kV but now moving towards 1.5 kV because of savings in cable size and quantity of inverters. The string voltage will probably increase further with advances in materials technology.

https://www.solarpowerworldonline.com/2018/11/high-voltage-solar-systems-save-contractors-cash/

ih_fan
Reply to  Laws of Nature
September 2, 2022 11:37 am

There is no high voltage with solar panels

So what? You can light a cigarette with 12 volts.

griff
Reply to  ACParker
September 2, 2022 4:08 am

Has been done in India for years – it indeed reduces evaporation. No reports of toxicity in India

Bryan A
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 8:27 am

Would you expect a country that regularly calls you pretending to be SOCIAL SECURITY or AMAZON or The IRS or The POLICE WITH AN ARREST WARRENT or MICROSOFT SUPPORT…(ALL of which I have personally received and all of which transferred to a “Boiler Room” (background noise of similar calls) manned by scammers with thick Indian Accents) to report any toxicity detection or even look for it in the first place?

Gunga Din
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 3:34 pm

India is building more coal fired power plants.
Is India your climate model?

KevinM
Reply to  griff
September 6, 2022 10:32 am

You should see what electric distribution looks like in Indian cities. Unbelievable ad hoc development.

DaveS
Reply to  ACParker
September 2, 2022 5:44 am

Another advantage of covering raw water is control of algae.

Gunga Din
Reply to  DaveS
September 2, 2022 3:37 pm

No Sunlight, algae dies.
It decomposes, the bacteria using up the dissolved O2.
Instant septic system!

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Gunga Din
September 3, 2022 5:24 am

Who says there will be no sunlight? The picture shows the panels well above the surface of the water. What gets blocked is the UV which what kills.

eck
September 1, 2022 8:02 pm

:”who in their right mind would want to take such a risk?” Bingo. Perfectly describes the idiots that run this place.

Philip CM
September 1, 2022 8:30 pm

So, if Newsom can’t drive his people into the arms of Texas and Florida with high taxes and crap high angst social policies, he’ll slowly poison them to death by his Chinese solar panels leaching toxins in the drinking water. 🤣

KcTaz
September 1, 2022 8:30 pm

https://wattsupwiththat.com/2022/09/01/california-to-cover-canals-with-toxic-solar-panels/
EXCERPT:

Among the material realities of green energy:

  • Building wind turbines and solar panels to generate electricity, as well as batteries to fuel electric vehicles, requires, on average, more than 10 times the quantity of materials, compared with building machines using hydrocarbons to deliver the same amount of energy to society.
  • A single electric car contains more cobalt than 1,000 smartphone batteries; the blades on a single wind turbine have more plastic than 5 million smartphones; and a solar array that can power one data center uses more glass than 50 million phones.
  • Replacing hydrocarbons with green machines under current plans—never mind aspirations for far greater expansion—will vastly increase the mining of various critical minerals around the world. For example, a single electric car battery weighing 1,000 pounds requires extracting and processing some 500,000 pounds of materials. Averaged over a battery’s life, each mile of driving an electric car “consumes” five pounds of earth. Using an internal combustion engine consumes about 0.2 pounds of liquids per mile.
  • Oil, natural gas, and coal are needed to produce the concrete, steel, plastics, and purified minerals used to build green machines. The energy equivalent of 100 barrels of oil is used in the processes to fabricate a single battery that can store the equivalent of one barrel of oil.
  • By 2050, with current plans, the quantity of worn-out solar panels—much of it nonrecyclable—will constitute double the tonnage of all today’s global plastic waste, along with over 3 million tons per year of unrecyclable plastics from worn-out wind turbine blades. By 2030, more than 10 million tons per year of batteries will become garbage.
KcTaz
September 1, 2022 8:35 pm

California requires idiotic “This May Cause Cancer” labels on a great many products most of us consume without the need of such labels, I wonder if they’re going to put up signs to this effect all along the canals covered with solar panels? Somehow, I doubt it.

Laws of Nature
September 1, 2022 8:56 pm

>> placing deadly toxins in close proximity to their household

Well, you might compare this presumed leaching risk from those rather simple and low density electronics with the stuff you already find in a typical household.
For example any of those fancy new strong magnets contains Nd, which is a rather poisonous heavy metal and these magnets are just sintered, so they break easy and release that poison as nano particles.

The real question is can this produce electricity at competitive costs and that depends on the local situation. From whats it looks like it is an easy installation (once you figured out how to mount one of those panes) and the area is not used otherwise, this might be a good idea!

ForrestB
September 1, 2022 9:17 pm

I swear I saw a solar panel packaged the other day and it said it had substance know to cause cancer in the state of California.

I know that this is true of every product sold in California… But still. <sarc/>

Last edited 1 month ago by ForrestB
John Pickens
September 1, 2022 9:57 pm

Where is the NSF (Natational Sanitation Foundation) stamp on these solar panels?  Anything manmade coming into contact with drinking water in the US is supposed to be tested and marked NSF approved.  I very much doubt that these idiots even considered the consequences of this effort.  Just as there has been not a single pilot demonstration project to prove that “Net Zero” is attainable in a controlled microeconomy, these fools are installing this project on a functioning drinking water supply rather than on a test system which does not put people at risk.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  John Pickens
September 2, 2022 6:40 am

It’s doubtful that the water flowing in the canals is considered potable.  The NSF stamp would only come into play in or downstream of the treatment plant.

Gunga Din
Reply to  John Pickens
September 2, 2022 3:45 pm

Way back when it was not uncommon for a rotating mechanism in wastewater treatment plant (also water?) to form a water tight seal by having a circular trough that the skirt of the rotating mechanism would revolve in. The trough would be filled with mercury.

KevinM
Reply to  Gunga Din
September 6, 2022 10:36 am

The “Muffin Grinder”!

Chris Hanley
September 1, 2022 9:58 pm

What happened to the ‘precautionary principle’ with these people?

Gunga Din
Reply to  Chris Hanley
September 2, 2022 3:52 pm

As a precaution, they’ve chosen to ignore such things as their own ‘precautionary principle’ that might might be inconvenient. Just as a precaution.

John Pickens
September 1, 2022 10:12 pm

By the way, the two major plastic encapsulants for solar panels are EVA (a vinyl acetate) and Tedlar (a fluorinated polymer). Neither of which has been approved for use in contact with drinking water. In fact, the EPA is spending Billions of dollars removing fluorinated hydrocarbons PFAs from drinking water.
https://www.epa.gov/pfas/increasing-our-understanding-health-risks-pfas-and-how-address-them

Last edited 1 month ago by John Pickens
Quilter52
September 1, 2022 10:59 pm

Love Canal, Californian style?

Peta of Newark
September 2, 2022 12:22 am

If they had some ‘proper’ fertile soil, they wouldn’t need ‘irrigation’ canals

It gets worse because irrigation water brings salt.
Because the irrigation water is of insufficient volume to flush that salt back out of the soil, the irrigated land is relentlessly and irredeemably poisoned.

A little bit of Cadmium or Arsenic is absolutely nothing compared to what is already going on

Old Cocky
Reply to  Peta of Newark
September 2, 2022 2:06 am

The salinity problem with many of the irrigation areas in Australia is raising the water table and bring salt up.

decnine
September 2, 2022 12:50 am

I’dliketopointoutthateveryexistingsolarpanelgetsrainedon.Thatrainwaterthengoesintosomekindofdrainandeventuallygetsintolocalgroundwater.

TonyG
Reply to  decnine
September 2, 2022 6:36 am

FYI, you can go back and add spaces when the comment box removes them as you type
Or.use.periods.to.separate.your.words
hopethisgetsfixedsoon

Serge Wright
September 2, 2022 1:59 am

Lots of issues here, such as structure collapse from the weight, breakage of the cells due to hail storms and high DC voltages and water also make for a good mix. But another issue is dirt collection on the panels in that installation orientation and the inability to clean the dirt off.

Old Cocky
Reply to  Serge Wright
September 2, 2022 2:09 am

There’s plenty of water in the irrigation channel to clean the dirt off the solar panels which are there to reduce evaporation flosses rom the irrigation channel 🙂

ozspeaksup
Reply to  Serge Wright
September 2, 2022 3:09 am

yeah lol
probably use more of the water to clean them than they save

ozspeaksup
September 2, 2022 2:52 am

saw this the other day elsewhere and thought how stupid it was.
unless they change the design evaporation will still happen sides are too high so breezes will carry water off. and animals people debris wont be seen to rescue or remove. raised centre would allow condensate to run back down to the channels
but then a decent flood or hail event or winds might negate that style also
basically its like the solar roads
making someone a tidy sum, but useless in the end
they wanna SAVE water then put the water INTO pipes also knocks off the weed issues and poison use. after decades of openair channels in western Vic they finally did that and the savings are enormous

Old Cocky
Reply to  ozspeaksup
September 2, 2022 5:17 pm

It looks like an “artist’s impression”.

Some low-paid commercial illustrator used by the advertising agency was given a brief by somebody with even less technical knowledge. “Put some banks of solar panels over this stock photo of a canal Oh, and make it look futuristic”.

It’s rather surprising there wasn’t some commercial shipping on the water, but perhaps that was cropped or air-brushed out.

DiggerUK
September 2, 2022 3:20 am

Ideas resulting from brain farts sometimes have a thread of credibility to them.
In this case if you put aside the justifiable criticisms of solar panels, you are left with the fact that water loss from evaporation will actually be reduced.

Not exactly putting tits on goldfish Jim…_

Editor
September 2, 2022 3:33 am

I’m curious if they have any engineering studies that give them an idea of how much water loss via evaporation they will be preventing? If that’s the goal wouldn’t a pipeline be a better solution?

The other issue, that appears to be glossed over in the UC Merced Study is — energy storage – presumably by commercial grade battery storage using Lithium Ion batteries all along the canal system and the infrastructure required to install and maintain that truly massive battery system.

Last edited 1 month ago by DC Cowboy
Editor
Reply to  Bill Marsh
September 2, 2022 4:44 am

I read the study. The study ignores the costs of energy storage in their NPV calculations and rather blithely assumes (the assumptions section of a study is always a good read) “we assumed that existing infrastructure (such as electrical substations and power line corridors) …  would be available adjacent to the selected sites.” Implying that they did not include the costs for that infrastructure in their NPV estimates.

 No mention of the cost of energy storage and/or backup systems is made in the assumptions or anywhere in the study that I could find.

DaveS
Reply to  Bill Marsh
September 2, 2022 5:46 am

It’s almost as though they were determined to make it look cost effective….

Gunga Din
Reply to  DaveS
September 2, 2022 3:57 pm

Ignore the cost and everything is cost effective.
Do that and you can even reduce inflation!

Editor
September 2, 2022 3:39 am

The other issue, that appears to be glossed over in the UC Merced Study is — energy storage – presumably by commercial grade battery storage using Lithium Ion batteries all along the canal system and the infrastructure required to install and maintain that truly massive battery system.

UK-Weather Lass
September 2, 2022 3:55 am

Mmm, what happens when there is a flood? … or, on second thoughts don’t even think about it.

griff
September 2, 2022 4:03 am

This has long been standard practice in India, with no ill effects. and can these panels leak any material into the water? Absolutely not. And being over a water channel, not much chance of the underlying structure catching fire.

John C Pickens
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 6:52 am

“can these panels leak any material into the water? Absolutely not.”

Oooh, oooh, I can play this game:

“can a 200ppm increase in atmospheric CO2 cause catastrophic climate change? Absolutely not.”

See, problem solved!

Editor
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 8:17 am

You said this twice without providing evidence to support it.
You ever heard of of Environmental Impact Statement?
What is an Environmental Impact Statement? (americanbar.org)

Gunga Din
Reply to  griff
September 2, 2022 3:59 pm

India is building more coal fired power plants.
Should we do the same?

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Gunga Din
September 3, 2022 8:53 am

Yes !

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Gunga Din
September 3, 2022 9:03 am
Last edited 1 month ago by Dave Andrews
Matthew Sykes
September 2, 2022 4:08 am

What a stupid idea!

c1ue
September 2, 2022 4:10 am

Hi,
I’m looking for a retired electrical engineer who is interested in working with me on a new/old technology project that addresses the electricity curtailment arising from solar PV and wind use at scale and flared natural gas problems.
Ideally someone with strong industrial scale electrical device development experience. Experience with physics/chemistry a plus.

c1ue
September 2, 2022 4:12 am

As for this idea: people are looking at this the wrong way.
The water quality bureaucrats will now face off vs. the California air quality bureaucrats.
Alien vs. Predator…

Tom in Florida
September 2, 2022 5:46 am

I would be more concerned about up keep and maintenance of both the panels and the transmission lines. But I live in Florida so don’t really care if California hits themselves over the head with this.

Climate believer
September 2, 2022 5:47 am

If you want to stop evaporation just cover it up, and if you need a lot of “co² free” energy you should build some nuclear power stations.
Wow, I’m a genius.

September 2, 2022 6:34 am

Do solar panels creat a UHI effect? And if so, would this not contribute to evaporation?

Reply to  Steve Clough
September 2, 2022 4:08 pm

UHI is mostly caused by a lack of evaporation and dark surfaces like asphalt.
Also a dark black PV panel can heat up to 80-90°C if they are mounted with deficient air cooling.

Olen
September 2, 2022 6:47 am

While saving the planet they should be more interested in saving the people they represent rather than putting them at risk.

Conserving water by covering it with pollutants while mandating other water that is usable be flowed into the ocean. California prides itself in leading the way, to what?

Editor
September 2, 2022 6:53 am

“Solar Panels are toxic” is a silly Junior Environmental Justice Warrior false talking point. They do not leach anything when in use — only possibly when broken up and land-filled.  So put that whole objection in the round-bin (and not in the recycle bin either!)
This really isn’t a bad idea — at least it doesn’t waste valuable farmland and it does reduce evaporation from the uncovered canals.
A 10 acre solar farm has been opened within a mile of my home and I am interested in how they will keep the panels clean to maintain efficiency.  In this area, we have a lot of dust and my experience on our sailboat is that solar panels quickly collect dust and lose efficiency rather quickly and must be cleaned regularly.  Easy on our boat…hard for ten acres over land.  Impossible for a mile and a half over water?
How the panels installed over water will be maintained will of great interest.

Reply to  Kip Hansen
September 2, 2022 3:54 pm

A high-pressure hose should be enough for cleaning and I assume that the panels can be walked on to service them. However, I find the substructure a bit fragile when viewed from a distance and the panels are not optimally aligned.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Kip Hansen
September 2, 2022 4:20 pm

Kip, the idea is loaded with the possibility of “unintended consequences”.
If hail can damage my roof to the point that it needs to be replaced, why wouldn’t that same hail damage a solar panel?
How long before they need to be repaired/replaced?
Farmland is valuable. There is no need to sacrifice it OR irrigation canals to CAGW hype.

Carlo, Monte
September 2, 2022 6:58 am

Lead: to my knowledge, PV module manufacturers use lead-free solders almost universally. Lead solders cannot be sold in Europe.

Cadmium: only in thin film CdS/CdTe modules, which are a small (<5%) portion of the PV module market, and the active semiconductor layers are extremely thin.

Arsenic: None in crystalline silicon modules; used in high-efficiency III-V semiconductor solar cells, especially GaAs. Nearly 100% restricted to power generation in space.

September 2, 2022 7:40 am

The author is a dumbass from the oil industry who fears for their sales.
Installing PV panels above water is ideal, as the cooler environment ensures higher electricity production from the panels (0.5%/°K) and at the same time reduces evaporation (1-1.5m3/m²) in the canal.
An oil tanker collided with an LNG carrier off the coast of Spain yesterday. Oil spill off Gibraltar. Fracking gas in the ground water, chemical industry, micro-plastic everywhere, etc. – these are the real scumbags when it comes to water pollution.

Richard Page
Reply to  macias
September 2, 2022 9:47 am

How very alarmist of you. The OS 35 was a bulk carrier carrying a cargo of steel bars – a small amount of fuel oil has leaked and work is progressing to remove the rest of the fuel oil on board. The LNG tanker it collided with has suffered very little damage and carried on to its destination. There has been very little environmental impact from the collision and the small amount of fuel oil that leaked can be easily cleaned up – it’s probably less than that from a natural oil seep.

John the Econ
September 2, 2022 8:08 am

Californians have been voting for this insanity for decades now, so I really don’t see how a little bit more lead in the water can do any worse.

Gunga Din
Reply to  John the Econ
September 2, 2022 4:37 pm

On a ballot initiative 30 or so years ago, California voted to ban hunting for cougars, mountain lions.
Not long after they began to kill joggers and an endangered species (Rocky Mountain Billy Goat?) numbers started to decrease.

HOJO
September 2, 2022 8:57 am

As a layman I have a basic question (ridicule is welcome) will the heat generated by the panels have a negative effect on the water itself?

Tim Gorman
Reply to  HOJO
September 2, 2022 8:58 am

You mean like growing toxic algae?

Dr. Bob
September 2, 2022 9:10 am

This seems like a Feel-Good project. But what are the economics of doing this? What is the return on capital employed. If it is such a good project, then industry would put up the capital. If it is a bad project, then Government puts up the capital and it is wasted. That is what Government does.

Gordon A. Dressler
September 2, 2022 9:49 am

Now, what might go wrong with this plan?

See https://wattsupwiththat.com/2022/09/02/cnbc-amazon-took-rooftop-solar-offline-after-roof-fires/ for a very recent case in point.

Also, one wonders how those solar-panels-over-aqueducts might fare during a major earthquake, which is not unheard of in California . . . you know, with the water sloshing over the solar panels and all that.

ResourceGuy
September 2, 2022 9:54 am

Sorry, but this very high level of arm waving is not sufficient.
Series-6-Datasheet.ashx (firstsolar.com)
Sustainability Documents | First Solar

Admin
September 2, 2022 11:13 am

Creating dark passages in an unsealed environment for water transport may have serious biological contamination issues. Open water flowing under the sun is why mountain streams are safe to drink. Who knows what will begin to grow in the dark places.

Richard Page
Reply to  Charles Rotter
September 2, 2022 12:12 pm

Trolls are well known to inhabit such dark and dank places – one can only assume that such a project will lead to a massive increase in the California Troll population.

Reply to  Charles Rotter
September 2, 2022 3:30 pm

”  Open water flowing under the sun is why mountain streams are safe to drink. Who knows what will begin to grow in the dark places. ”
 
Open water flowing under the sun is why mountain streams are dried up in summer. If you want to knows what will begin to grow in the dark places – just look under your cap. The panels on the photo are semi-transparent.

Richard Page
Reply to  macias
September 3, 2022 6:46 am

It couldn’t have anything to do with the water flowing downhill, away from the mountain, could it? Plus summer being a time when said mountain streams are fed far less snowmelt, which is the great majority of their water supply? I would suggest that the implied evaporation would be a very minor factor.

Kevin R.
September 2, 2022 1:38 pm

Socialist grade stupid.

Bob
September 2, 2022 1:58 pm

It seems to me that all of the green devil’s ideas have gone up in smoke. Have they had any ideas that are good?

Richard Page
Reply to  Bob
September 2, 2022 2:24 pm

Setting fire to Amazon was a good one, not sure that was the intention though.

Pat Frank
September 2, 2022 4:38 pm

Solar panels need regular washing to maintain conversion efficiency. Where will the run-off water go, if not into the canals? As you note, Eric, what will that water carry, along with the dust?

Maybe the Turlock Irrigation District should install some water-quality monitors downstream of the panels. Surely standard prudence demands that.

Jtom
September 2, 2022 11:25 pm

Read the comments and was surprised to see only a passing comment about earthquakes. What is the earthquake rating of these panels and their support structure? At first blush I would guess microcracks leading to water intrusion could be an issue. It rarely freezes, but the record low is 18 degrees F, so it is possible.

The largest earthquake in Turlock:
today: 2.8 in San Martin, California, United States
this week: 4.0 in Soledad, California, United States
this month: 4.5 in Smith Valley, Nevada, United States
this year: 4.7 in Cambria, California, United States

Gryunt Monglaar
September 3, 2022 7:56 pm

Y’all are missing out on the greatest effect these panels will have: it will make it much more difficult for people to get rid of stolen cars by driving them into canals. An excellent plan to finally reduce Cali’s soaring crime rates!

Cliff Hiilton
September 5, 2022 10:02 am

What is the temperature under these panels? Will these panels increase the temperature of the water?

KevinM
September 6, 2022 9:45 am

deliberately placing deadly toxins in close proximity to their household and agricultural water supply”

A little panicky. Lead solder is an option, not a requirement.

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