“To be clear, the High Prairie Wind Farm has been curtailed from before dusk to after dawn since April 19, 2021,” Geoff Marke, chief economist for the Missouri Office of the Public Counsel said in sworn testimony filed last week with the Missouri Public Service Commission. Ameren halted night operations for several weeks this spring after four bats, which are nocturnal, and 52 birds, including a bald eagle, were discovered dead on the property, according to a report submitted to federal wildlife officials.
Articles filed under Impact on Wildlife from Missouri
A wind farm company proposing a project in Northwest Missouri has raised the concern of the Missouri Department of Conservation over potential bird and bat deaths.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is developing an environmental impact statement to evaluate the potential of issuing incidental take permits for protected bird and bat species if regional wind industry development grows. According to a news release by the service, the states within the plan are Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. It is called the Midwest Wind Energy Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan.
For our part, we always felt uneasy about this proposal but joined with others in wanting to defer to the experts. The problem, however, is government oversight of wind farm developers is limited, meaning expert opinions carry less weight. In the end, Element Power withdrew the project rather than try to scale back operations to meet conservationists’ compelling arguments.