Articles filed under Impact on Wildlife from Europe
The application for a 47-turbine wind farm has been criticised by RSPBS for its impact on breeding birds and its location, being in the middle of the Caithness and Sutherland peatlands’ Special Protection Area (SPA). The tract of blanket bog, which is an important carbon store, is home to rare and endangered species such as golden eagle, hen harrier, merlin, black-throated diver, red-throated diver, greenshank and golden plover.
“This is, without doubt, one of the most worrying wind farm applications we have seen in Scotland. Not only does it risk harming some of the UK’s rarest species, it would make restoration of this core part of the globally important Flow Country much more difficult."
The European Commission is taking Bulgaria to Court over its failure to protect unique habitats and important species. The case concerns the Kaliakra region, a migratory route and resting place for highly endangered species, where large numbers of wind turbines and other developments have been authorised without adequate assessments of their environmental effects.
Scottish ministers gave Viking planning permission in April last year but judge, Lady Clark of Calton, said the Electricity Act required a developer to hold a generation licence before it could gain approval. Also, she said the minsters had failed to comply with the European Wild Birds Directive.
It has emerged that RWE estimates in a planning submission that 860 harbour porpoises may be disturbed by noise from pile drivers. Denise Parker, of the Porthcawl Environment Trust, said: “This is a breeding site and a resting place for the harbour porpoise, so we are very concerned.”
In Spain, wind turbines kill between six and 18 million birds and bats a year, according to the national ornithological society SEO/BirdLife. In North America, tens of thousands of birds of prey end up in rotor blades each year, including the highly symbolic American bald eagle. ... that most suitable locations for wind farms are often situated in bird migration corridors. 60-70 per cent of planned wind installations in Switzerland are in sensitive areas.
Since 2010, a proportion of the harrier chicks fledged at Langholm have been fitted with satellite tags which monitor their progress. The row centres on the methodology used by Infinis' environmental experts to assess bird numbers, which came up with the figure of a solitary hen harrier flying over the proposed site.
The EU Commission has confirmed it is taking infringement action against the UK Authorities for failing to adequately protect native harbour porpoises. The proposed Atlantic Array project involving 240 turbines each around 700ft tall between Gower and North Devon covering 124 square miles.
Energy company Statkraft, which operates the farm, says that several white-tailed eagles (also called sea eagles) are found dead on the ground having flown into turbines at the inland wind farm. As well as testing black rotor blades, the INTACT project will also examine whether increasing the visibility of the turbine's towers might prevent strikes from birds that fly lower than eagles, such as ducks and grouse.
The European Commission's Habitats Directive places the harbour porpoise on a special annex requiring special areas of conservation. ...Almost uniquely the UK is not among them. It's about wind farms. The Government is mad on them. Offshore wind farms are the answer to everything and nothing must get in their way. And wind farming can affect porpoises.
WDCS remains concerned about the impact that these large developments in the marine environment will have on cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises). ...habitat loss caused by the presence of the structures, WDCS is concerned about the high potential for cetaceans to be disturbed and displaced by noise introduced into their environment from the construction and operation of offshore wind farms, due to their high acoustic sensitivity.
We support the increased protection proposed for national parks and national scenic areas, though this merely formalises the present de facto position. Such protection should apply also where development is proposed beyond their boundaries ...the current greatest threat is large onshore wind developments.
The RSPB hopes that the windmills will be beneficial to birds and other wildlife in the long run Twitchers had flocked to the Outer Hebrides for a glimpse of the world's fastest-flying bird, a white-throated needletail, only spotted on these shores eight times since 1846.
There had been only eight recorded sightings of the white-throated needletail in the UK since 1846. So when one popped up again on British shores this week, twitchers were understandably excited. A group of 40 enthusiasts dashed to the Hebrides to catch a glimpse of the brown, black and blue bird, which breeds in Asia and winters in Australasia.
"It was seen by birders fly straight into the turbine. It is ironic that after waiting so long for this bird to turn up in the UK, it was killed by a wind turbine and not a natural predator. "It is tragic. More than 80 people had already arrived on the island and others were coming from all over the country. But it just flew into the turbine. It was killed instantly."
The Scottish government came under pressure last night not to cave in to the renewables industry, as a poll indicated overwhelming support for wind farms to be banned from wild land. Environmentalists privately fear that Alex Salmond, the First Minister, could backtrack on pledges to protect scenic areas from turbines in the face of strong lobbying by the green energy sector.
I wonder what it will take before the world truly wakes up to the horror, the corruption, the expense, the pointlessness, the total wrongness-in-every-way of the wind industry. My guess - and it will happen - is the decapitation, by a rogue turbine blade, of an innocent passer-by.
The slain young eagle was likely one of the six white-tailed eagles in a row, "said Pedersen, who follows bird migration in Skagen daily.
Campaigners against the "further industrialisation" of the Scottish landscape by wind turbines have reacted sceptically to claims of an about turn on the issue by Alex Salmond. ..."If things are going to change, we would also like to see the guideline that suggests wind turbines should be at least 2km from homes being made mandatory. At the moment that guideline is routinely trampled over."
Windfarm protesters Fran Raw and Dr Angela Armstrong told last week's meeting of Port William Community Council that the identification of "20 EU protected species" around the proposed site of a windfarm locally could help them stop the development going ahead.