Here are some of the top environmental links folks are Digging today:
— Wired reports on the recent news that California's largest utility has signed a 20-year deal to buy electricity from seven planned solar-thermal plants in the Mojave Desert. The total 1,300 megawatts will power 845,000 homes, the utility and manufacturers say, and the installations will produce 3.7 billion kilowatt hours per year. In other big-renewable-energy-project news, Inhabitat reports that a German company will build a 960-megawatt wind farm in the North Sea, spanning 56 square miles and consisting of 250 turbines.
• New York Times: "Oil Industry Ready to Work on Global Warming"
— Oil executives have had to adapt quickly the during the last month, as U.S. priorities on climate change and fossil fuels have suddenly transformed under the Obama administration. Most seem to have accepted that oil's name is mud, but there are differences of opinion about whether cap-and-trade or a straightforward carbon tax is a better track to take.
• Daily Telegraph: "Darwin's Galapagos islands under threat from tourism"
— Eco-tourism is simultaneously killing the Galapagos Islands' native flora and fauna and sustaining its human population, the Telegraph reports. The president of the Galapagos Conservation Trust says the ecological situation is so bad, eco-tourists should be limited to one visit per lifetime to the islands. "[T]hey are very delicate, and there is huge pressure on them because of tourism, development and the introduction of invasive species," Andrew Marr said Thursday at a dinner celebrating Charles Darwin's 200th birthday. "That is why, having been to the islands once, I promise never to go back."
• Flickr [photo]: "Struck by lightning"
— Flickrer Paul Parsons snapped this shot of a lightning-decapitated power line.
— This photo of fighting female stallions at a wild horse conservation center in South Dakota leads National Geographic's 10-page report this month on the West's wild mustangs.