Great Basin Naturalist


Construction of a 10-MWe solar thermal power plant in Daggett, California, involved clearing and leveling 53 ha of desert land. Transient offsite effects of this construction were apparent as a reduced density of annual plants within 100 m downwind of the edge of the cleared area. Schismus arabicus populations recovered within four years, but Erodium cicutarium populations did not. The effects appeared to be related more to an interaction of seed-dispersal mechanisms with the large, open space than to the obvious sand movement and deposition associated with the clearing operations.