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    Alerts

    These postings are provided to help publicize the efforts of affiliated groups and individuals related to industrial wind energy development. Most of the notices posted here are not the product of nor are they necessarily endorsed by National Wind Watch.


    posted:  January 11, 2015
    Alberta, Fundraisers, WildlifePrint storyE-mail story

    Migratory bats and wind energy: a research project

    $15,000 goal: Go to Indiegogo site.

    Erin Baerwald, PhD researcher

    Funds will support research on the effect of wind energy on migratory bats and help to conserve them.

    Erin Baerwald is a PhD student at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada. She did her BSc in Environmental and Conservation Sciences at the University of Alberta and her MSc in Ecology with Dr. Robert Barclay at the University of Calgary. For her graduate research she has been studying the issue of bat deaths at wind farms and needs your help to finish it!

    20150101200448-Erin_Baerwald_examining_a_hoary_bat_carcass_-_photo_by_Monty_Nicol

    If this is your first time hearing about bat fatalities at wind turbines, here’s what you should know:

    Bat deaths at wind turbines became an issue in North America in 2003 when thousands of bats were killed at a wind energy facility in West Virginia. Since then bat fatalities have been reported at almost every modern wind energy facility in North America, and many others in Europe, but fatality rates differ greatly. Some wind farms kill very few bats, but other sites kill large numbers and we think that those sites might be built along bat migration routes.

    In North America, ~80% of all bat fatalities are of three species of bat that roost in trees and migrate long-distances: Hoary bats, Eastern red bats, and Silver-haired bats. We recently estimated that from 2000-2011 between 840,000 and 1.7 million bats were killed at wind turbines across North America. This number of fatalities is concerning because bats normally live a long time and reproduce very slowly, only having 1 or 2 pups a year. Because of this, they take a long time to recover from population declines.

    20150101200833-hoary_bat_and_pup

    I am using genetic information to learn about the migratory behaviours of two of the species most heavily affected by wind turbines, hoary bats and silver-haired bats. As you can imagine, studying migration in small animals that fly at night is very challenging, so we know very little about bat migration. By determining the genetic relatedness of bats collected at wind turbines, my aim is to discover if bats use the same migration routes every year and if mothers teach these migratory routes to their young. We can use this information to help us determine where we should be focusing our conservation efforts.

    Want to see some of my previous research? Check out my Google Scholar profile.

    Want to learn even more about bats and wind energy? Awesome! Check out Bat Conservation International and Bats and Wind Energy Cooperative.

    The Impacts

    This project will give us valuable insight into the migratory behaviours of bats. We will use this knowledge to determine if wind energy facilities impact bat migration and to help us reduce the harm. I previously researched ways to reduce bat fatalities at wind turbines and showed that fatalities can be reduced by up to 60% if turbines remain still in low wind speeds. For this work, along with my other research on the issue, I was recently awarded The William T. Hornaday Award. I am hoping to build on this success with knowledge gained in my current research. Without this funding, I will be unable to complete this project, so the bats and I really need your help!

    What I Need

    Throughout my PhD I have been very fortunate to have received project funding from some great organizations like The Alberta Conservation Association, Alberta Innovates – Technology Futures, and The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. However, I need $15,000 more in order to cover the costs of genetic work and complete this research project. Despite what TV crime shows have led us to believe, genetics work takes a lot of time and money! I have completed a large portion of the work, but your partnership in this project will allow me to finish the lab work that is needed for the study and conservation of migratory bats across Canada and the US.

    Want the nitty-gritty details? I have completed sequencing and analysis of a region of mitochondrial DNA for both species. I have also developed ~20 polymorphic microsatellites markers per species. I still need to genotype all the individuals (~200 per species) at all 20 loci. To do this, we need to run many PCRs and do lots of fragment analysis. If you are familiar with this kind of work, you know that this will take a lot of time and money! That’s where your help comes in.

    Every dollar raised will be used to pay for the lab work needed to complete this research project. If I raise more than my goal of $15,000, I will be able to analyze more DNA samples and do an even better job!

    20150101200947-silver-haired_on_a_tree

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    posted:  January 10, 2015
    VideosPrint storyE-mail story

    Source:  National Wind Watch

    Wind turbine transport and construction video

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    posted:  January 9, 2015
    Press releases, ScotlandPrint storyE-mail story

    Source:  Winds of Justice

    Reliable information on wind power is important & The road to ruin

    The people of Scotland deserve the real truth regarding the costs, to them, of Renewables.

    If the general public realised how hard the SNP government’s policy on wind farms was (and already is) going to impact their health and hit them in the pocket from so many different sources for NO energy security, NO affordable energy bills and NO guaranteed reduction in CO2 emissions, would they continue to go along with what they are being told by this government and the Renewables industry?

    HOW MUCH EVIDENCE IS BEING HIDDEN & ARE WE BEING LIED TO ABOUT ADVERSE EFFECTS?

    There is a ‘hierarchy of spin’ pervading all this. Firstly, the industry, then the DECC and finally the Institute of Acoustics who present themselves as the ‘honest brokers’ (statement available). They should not put a desire to keep the DECC happy above a need to protect the health of the public.

    Councillors, planners, and statutory authorities such as SNH frequently attend presentations and workshops sponsored and hosted by the Renewables Industry.

    Not only are most of these bodies prevented from attending events held by those with concerns about the industry, they are denied the same access to information such as that given at the inaugural Scottish Rural Parliament on 6th November 2013 in Oban, Argyll.

    The workshop presentation was given in two parts. The first by Christine Metcalfe was entitled: “ Why the need for reliable information about wind power production is so important” focusing on health/legal directives/Forestry Commission Scotland and covering:

    1. Why current wind energy policy is likely to affect the mass (urban) population and covers the immediate health impacts of those forced to live in close proximity to industrial wind turbines including issues such as Low Frequency Noise.

    2. The danger of ‘Paying to be Poisoned’ through water contamination from IWT’s. See for example: http://www.windsofjustice.org.uk/2014/12/doctor-claims-scotlands-biggest-windfarm-has-contaminated-public-water-supply-with-cancer-causing-chemical/ and http://stopthesethings.com/2014/08/15/scotlands-toxic-shock-wind-farms-poisoning-neighbours/

    (A valuable website to view for information is www.westcorkwind.com which includes a particularly relevant section on CITIZEN ENGAGEMENT. The concept of citizen participation, defined by sociologist Sherry Arnstein as “the redistribution of power that enables the have-not citizens, presently excluded from the political and economic processes, to be deliberately included in the future” is graphically illustrated in the form of ‘Arnstein’s Ladder’.)

    Just when we thought it couldn’t get any worse with crippling energy bills, fuel poverty, escalating costs on our goods and services and our local authorities slashing their expenditure, the realisation dawns that there are those living in a complete nightmare with family’s health being compromised by living near industrial wind turbines which are approved by a government with a remit to protect us.

    3. How the Forestry Commission Scotland’s role as a government organisation is being used to further government aims against the best interests of the electorate.

    4. How we are forced to abide by one set of laws whilst by-passing others. How can a government insist that the EU directives relating to climate change are legally binding, whilst ignoring and by-passing equally legally binding directives which should protect our environment? The UK government is in breach of article 7 of the UN’s Aarhus Convention.

    The second presentation was the “The road to ruin” by Stuart Young and has been the subject of a letter to Nicola Sturgeon and a press release.

    Links to the presentations are:

    http://www.windsofjustice.org.uk/2014/12/why-reliable-information-on-wind-power-is-so-important/

    Transcript 1: Why-reliable-information-on-wind-power-is-so-important

    Transcript 2: The-Road-to-Ruin

    Enough misleading claims have been made. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has a brief opportunity to restore truth and integrity as a mainstay of the Scottish Government in dealing with the people it is elected to serve. It will prove politically and morally dangerous to ignore the urgent need to conduct a review of all Scottish Government pronunciations on renewable energy, scrutinise them for their honesty and accuracy, and restore some moral fibre to the Governance of this country.

    Notes

    1. Winds of Justice is the trademark and name of the web site of a non-governmental organisation promoting environmental protection. The company – Biosphere and Dark Sky Park Protection Ltd. – purpose is, where possible, through representation to give primacy (in the face of competing development interests) to the protection of the Galloway & South Ayrshire Biosphere and the International Dark Sky Park. Also protection to the local environment against potential individual or cumulative environmental intrusion from wind farm and other industrial developments. www.windsofjustice.org.uk

    2. Christine Metcalfe journeyed to Geneva in Dec.2012 to attend the Hearing called by the UN’s Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee. This was to defend the complaint lodged on behalf of her Community Council. That complaint was upheld in that the UK was found to be non-compliant with Article 7 of the Convention. Susan Crosthwaite was one of the observers who also spoke at the Hearing.

    3. Stuart Young is a committed anti windfarm campaigner, former Chair of Caithness Windfarm Information Forum www.caithnesswindfarms.co.uk and author of the report “Analysis of UK Wind Power Generation November 2008 to December 2010” sometimes known as the “John Muir Report.” http://www.jmt.org/assets/report_analysis%20uk%20wind_syoung.pdf

    The environment of Scotland and the UK does not belong to administrators to do with as they wish, such as filling it with wind turbines and pylons. Instead, the environment of Scotland (including land held by Scottish Water and Forestry Commission Scotland) belongs to its people and they have defined rights in law, which must be respected.

    In support of the above statement on the ‘hierarchy of spin’ – the Renewables UK approach has been comprehensively debunked in passing by Mike Stigwood in his paper found at http://docs.wind-watch.org/Internoise-2014-Stigwood.pdf titled ‘Initial findings of the UK Cotton Farm Wind Farm long term community noise monitoring project. Proceedings of INTER-NOISE 2014.’

    ‘This paper outlines the Cotton Farm Wind Farm community noise monitoring project where real time sound and weather data is continuously gathered at a representative community location and provided on-line for anyone to research, evaluate and improve their understanding of wind farm noise. The Cotton Farm WF project compliments measurements made by MAS Environment al (MAS) of amplitude modulation (AM) and other elements of wind farm noise at over 18 sites.’ The IoA Statement is also available.

    Re. the SNH remit on water: Catchment management

    A catchment is the area of land drained by a river and its tributaries. The area of a catchment could include the slopes of hills, floodplains, lochs and forests. The quality and quantity of waters within a catchment closely reflect a wide range of natural processes and human activitieswhich occur throughout the entire catchment, including its ground waters and wetlands.

    The waters in a catchment are connected, which means that an activity leading to poor water quality in one part of the catchment may have the potential to affect the health of a much wider area.

    The Water Framework Directive (WFD) is again the legislation by which SNH prevent deterioration and enhance status of aquatic ecosystems, including groundwater:

    • promote sustainable water use;

    • reduce pollution;

    • contribute to the mitigation of floods and droughts.

    Groundwater is an important resource, providing more than one-third of the potable water supply in the British Isles. In addition, it provides essential base-flow to rivers and wetland areas, often supporting important ecological systems. However, groundwater is vulnerable to pollution – especially because it is generally less apparent than surface water and the potential impacts on groundwater are rarely observed and so tend to receive little consideration. Groundwater pollution is problematic because aquifer pollution persists for long periods and is often very difficult and costly to remediate: groundwater pollution prevention measures cost 10– 20 times less than groundwater clean-up and aquifer remediation programmes. Groundwater quality is endangered by construction activities that provide a pollution source or pathway or that significantly vary natural groundwater levels. In contrast to surface water, groundwater is generally more vulnerable to pollution by chemicals, metals, hydrocarbons and salts than by sediments, because particulate pollutants are naturally filtered during infiltration and recharge. Pollution of groundwater is likely to result in the loss of potable or other water supplies, the degradation of receiving river or wetland waters and habitats, and, for offenders, prosecution.

    Contacts for further information:

    Susan Crosthwaite – 01465 831363
    Christine Metcalfe – 01866 844220
    Lyndsey Ward – 01463 782997
    Stuart Young – 01877 330206

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    posted:  January 5, 2015
    Meetings, Noise, Research, Scotland, TechnologyPrint storyE-mail story

    Source:  Institute of Noise Control Engineering—Europe

    Wind Turbine Noise 2015 — Abstracts Accepted

    Wind Turbine Noise 2015 — 6th International Conference — INCE Europe
    Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow, Scotland | 20 – 23 April 2015

    Presentations — oral, poster or part of a workshop session:

    Download Conference Notice and Registration Form

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    posted:  January 1, 2015
    AnnouncementsPrint storyE-mail story

    Source:  National Wind Watch

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    posted:  December 29, 2014
    Announcements, Newsletters, PublicationsPrint storyE-mail story

    Source:  National Wind Watch

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    posted:  December 24, 2014
    LettersPrint storyE-mail story

    Source:  Emily Dickinson

    Hope is the thing with feathers

    chickadee-holiday


    ‘Hope’ is the thing with feathers—
    That perches in the soul—
    And sings the tune without the words—
    And never stops—at all—

    And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard—
    And sore must be the storm—
    That could abash the little Bird
    That kept so many warm—

    I’ve heard it in the chillest land—
    And on the strangest Sea—
    Yet, never, in Extremity,
    It asked a crumb—of Me.

    —Emily Dickinson

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