GOP’s Louie Gohmert says installing more solar panels will make birds ‘explode’

GOP’s Louie Gohmert says installing more solar panels will make birds ‘explode’

Rep, Louie Gohmert (R-TX) is absolutely apoplectic about the “green stuff” that’s included in the $1.2 billion bipartisan infrastructure bill which passed earlier this week in the Senate because he says the legislation is “out of control” and the money allocated for more solar panels across the country will lead to an epidemic of exploding birds.

During an interview on Thursday with One America News, Gohmert had to say about more solar farms in the United States:

“Another part of that Green Deal is the huge solar farm that they have out on the border of California and Nevada. Thousands of acres of concave mirrors that magnify the sun toward three towers that heat up the liquid in there and turn turbines.”

That led the congressman to bemoan the plight of birds who fly over the solar farms:

“They weren’t anticipating hundreds and thousands of what they would call ‘flamers. Because when the birds fly through, if they survive the windmills, then they hit that magnified sun, explode in flame, and down they go, bird guts all over the mirrors. So that takes some cleaning up.”

What?! Does this man have any idea what he’s talking about? Well, kinda, but mostly not, Newsweek notes:

A 2014 report by CBS looked at a solar facility in California’s Mojave Desert where roughly 6000 birds die per year. The report cited a federal investigation of three southern California solar facilities that they said, “act as a ‘mega trap’ attracting insects, which in turn attract insect-eating birds, which are (then) incapacitated.” In this report, the birds were referred to as “streamers.”

According to a 2016 study, roughly 140,000 birds die annually in the United States because of solar power plants. There is still no clear scientific consensus as to why birds have been shown to be attracted to wind farms and solar power plants. One theory called the “lake effect” is that “migrating birds perceive the reflective surfaces of [solar] panels as bodies of water and collide with the structures as they attempt to land on the panels,” according to a report from

Now compare those numbers of bird deaths to those killed each year by fossil fuel production plants: In 2006 alone, those killed a staggering 14.5 million birds in the United States alone.

It’s incredibly tempting to call Congressman Gohmert a birdbrain, but birds are so much smarter than he is.

Featured Image Via Screenshot 


About The Author

Will Bishop

Will Bishop has worked as a professional journalist and writer for over 20 years.


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