Impact on Wildlife or Tourism
As federal wildlife officials turn a blind eye to the wind industry's slaughter, they exercise strict enforcement when others run afoul of the law.
This opinion piece by a recently retired endangered raptor specialist at New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation does not make specific mention of wind energy, but the message directly applies.
The Associated Press published a thorough article ...highlighting the Department of Interior's unwillingness to hold the wind industry accountable to laws meant to protect wildlife. With over 573,000 birds killed by wind turbines each year, according to the Wildlife Society Bulletin, as well as a significant number of bats, the Department of Interior can only point to superficial and voluntary guidelines that the wind industry continues to ignore.
It stands to reason that if you build a wind turbine in a bird's flight path, the result will be lethal. If birds maintain a predictable flight path, such as an annual migration route, then it should be possible to avoid that flight path. But what if you want to build your wind farm between a bird's breeding place and its regular hunting grounds? That is more difficult.
If another golden eagle is killed a Technical Advisory Committee - comprised of biologists from federal and state agencies - will meet and make recommendations to the BLM about what mitigation to take, which could curtail operation of turbines or even shut down turbines.
The federal government's disparate treatment of various industries whose operations have resulted in the deaths of eagles or migratory birds has become an issue of late.
We are presently at a critical point in New Hampshire. Foreign wind farm companies are rushing to construct huge wind turbine projects along NH's ridgelines, in ways that will forever change the landscape of our state, unless we act now. We need to institute an immediate state-wide moratorium on such projects, before we reach the point of no return.
Biodiversity that takes centuries to evolve cannot be reinvented overnight, neither can the bald eagles that nested in a 100 year old cottonwood tree at Fisherville be expected to accept a Tupperware nest platform on a pole somewhere, when their instinct tells them they should be in a natural tree somewhere else. Legislation is purportedly in place to protect species at risk - that's why it is there. Legislation that can be bought, and then twisted to serve the needs of development is not legislation. It smacks of a corrupt system of the worst possible kind perpetuated by money and greed.
This home to nature is shortly to be under attack, not from hunters or foragers but from a Government approved industrial wind developer. Those of us throughout the province who admire and want to protect nature stand in disbelief at the carnage that will unfold and that is a result of the Green Energy and Economy Act (GEA) passed by the GTA centric Liberal Party.
By using mathematical formulas derived from these studies, the average distance of a large bird carcass found under the 2.3 MW turbines at Wolf Island would be 101 meters from their towers. This average is far outside the search areas used. The Wolf Island mortality studies used search areas of only 60 and 50 meters. These studies clearly missed most of the carcasses. It also does not account for wandering cripples and wind personal interference.
This gut wrenching poem tells a true story.
Official figures have revealed a catastrophic decline in Scottish tourism last year ...VisitScotland chairman Mike Cantlay has blamed the poor weather. Since when do tourists come to Scotland for the weather? ...This is the same tourism chief who claimed a few weeks ago that giant industrial wind turbines which now scar some of our most beautiful hills and glens are not a deterrent to tourists.
We shouldn't dynamite our mountain ridgelines to build a tool that can't achieve our carbon reduction objective. We shouldn't build power plants in the Kingdom when the demand is in Chittenden County. We shouldn't ignore the clear-cutting of hundreds of acres of trees that are our best carbon vacuum cleaners. We shouldn't allow runoff from miles of mountaintop roads and dozens of massive concrete base pads akin to any Wal-Mart parking lot. We shouldn't use a tool that kills off wildlife. How can anyone possibly justify such a tool receiving a permit to take endangered species?
Why is the public not more aware of this carnage? First, because the wind industry (with the shameful complicity of some ornithological organisations) has gone to great trouble to cover it up - to the extent of burying the corpses of victims. Second, because the ongoing obsession with climate change means that many environmentalists are turning a blind eye to the ecological costs of renewable energy.
"This makes no sense," said Kim Kaufman, executive director at Black Swamp, whose "Biggest Week in American Birding" last spring attracted about 75,000 birders and gave the whole region an economic booster shot.
"Putting a wind turbine here flies in the face of everything we have worked for to protect birds and to promote this area and birding."
The province's efforts to increase the use of wind power must be balanced against the equally valid goals of protecting Ontario's wildlife and natural environment. ...rigorous guidelines are needed to protect bats and birds.
Wind farm owners worry about prosecution under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) if a whooping crane is killed by one of their turbines. So the industry is seeking an exemption under the ESA, known as a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP), if a crane is accidentally killed.
A pair of stories in the last week detailed conflicts between San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) and national environmental groups over two separate wind projects. One of the conflicts appears to have been resolved amicably, while the other is headed to the courtroom. And each story involves the power of flight.
These bat species are far more important than First Wind's profits. There's presently a glut of generation in New England and First Wind's intermittent power does nothing more than add to the surplus on the grid. ...First Wind agreed to curtailment during low wind speeds at certain temperatures and now seems to be complaining that such curtailment won't be profitable. Too bad for them.
Nowhere is this more true than off the coast of Norfolk, where Ed Davey has just made one of those life and death decisions that come with the high office of Energy Secretary. Shockingly, he has decreed that guillotining 94 shaggy-crested terns a year is acceptable, even if you have no plans to put them in a sandwich.
Several of America's finest national wildlife refuges - Pocosin Lakes, Alligator River and Lake Mattamuskeet - in concert with local landowners, provide the winter base from which these incredible animals can fly ...Remarkably, if the project moves ahead, the migratory swans, geese, ducks, and raptors may return to their winter Carolina home in a year or two to find 49 spinning turbines, each the height of the Washington Monument.