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Don't sacrifice birds, environment

Stephanie Kromer, director of energy and environmental policy at the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, is using the coronavirus as a smokescreen to publicly rally for updating (read: weakening) the National Environmental Policy Act (“Refine regulatory landscape,” June 20).

NEPA, the foundation of our country’s environmental safeguards, was enacted in 1969 to require that environmental impacts from federally funded projects are fully considered before construction occurs and appropriate steps are taken to mitigate for them.

In the world of natural sciences, valid studies of this type cannot be realistically completed in less than 3 years.

In stating her case, she is factually incorrect when using a local example of its effectiveness to illustrate her case — the ill-advised wind turbine that was proposed for Camp Perry.

Specifically, she erroneously cites the “Camp Perry proposal for the construction of wind turbines offshore of the Great Lakes” when in fact, it was one turbine, on land, but only mile from Lake Erie and within a primary migratory pathway funnel used annually by millions of birds representing hundreds of species.

Front and center are dozens of... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Stephanie Kromer, director of energy and environmental policy at the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, is using the coronavirus as a smokescreen to publicly rally for updating (read: weakening) the National Environmental Policy Act (“Refine regulatory landscape,” June 20).

NEPA, the foundation of our country’s environmental safeguards, was enacted in 1969 to require that environmental impacts from federally funded projects are fully considered before construction occurs and appropriate steps are taken to mitigate for them.

In the world of natural sciences, valid studies of this type cannot be realistically completed in less than 3 years.

In stating her case, she is factually incorrect when using a local example of its effectiveness to illustrate her case — the ill-advised wind turbine that was proposed for Camp Perry.

Specifically, she erroneously cites the “Camp Perry proposal for the construction of wind turbines offshore of the Great Lakes” when in fact, it was one turbine, on land, but only ¼ mile from Lake Erie and within a primary migratory pathway funnel used annually by millions of birds representing hundreds of species.

Front and center are dozens of species of neotropical Warblers, diminutive, colorful, and in some cases, critically rare birds that attract tens of thousands of birding enthusiasts from all over the world each spring as these migrating birds stop to rest along the lakeshore in close proximity to where the proposed turbine was to be erected.

The American Bird Conservancy called it “the worst sited project that they have seen” while overwhelming concern was expressed by local tourism bureaus, government officials, bird conservation organizations, and thousands who signed a petition objecting to the idea.

The Ohio National Guard eventually withdrew their plans for the venture, including their Finding of No Significant Impact claim.

Meanwhile, bird mortalities from wind turbines are rapidly increasing in correlation with the expansion of industrial “wind farms” across the continent, including the bald eagle killed at the Wood County landfill in January.

The Ohio Chamber of Commerce seems to be not only willing to sacrifice birds and the property rights of adjacent landowners to promote wind energy but also opposes other government regulations such as wetlands protection and air pollution limits for businesses that value profits over environmental health.

NEPA and the protective environmental regulations signed into law in the early 1970s need to be protected from all who want to weaken them, including those who are willing to shamefully use the coronavirus for political gain.

Returning to business practices that led to widespread pollution prior to the age of environmental awareness is not the direction that the majority of Americans wish to travel.

The writer is the retired manager of the OSU/​Stone Laboratory, and Black Swamp Bird Observatory Conservation Committee.


Source: https://blade-share.newssli...

JUL 4 2020
http://www.windaction.org/posts/51547-don-t-sacrifice-birds-environment
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