- Associated Press - Friday, October 31, 2014

BLYTHE, Calif. (AP) - Authorities say safety netting could have prevented the death of 64 birds at a Southern California solar energy plant.

The Riverside Press-Enterprise (https://bit.ly/1xGAjDA ) says the birds died this month at the Genesis solar plant near Blythe after getting mired in wastewater evaporation ponds that contained an oily toxic chemical.

The California Energy Commission says safety netting designed to keep birds away from the plant was destroyed by high winds in August and never replaced.

Roger Johnson, who oversees environmental compliance for the commission, says new netting’s been ordered but won’t be installed before year’s end.

However, authorities say the 10 acres of ponds are being drained and people stationed around them to keep the birds away.

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Information from: The Press-Enterprise, https://www.pe.com

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