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Resource Documents: Europe (34 items)

RSSEurope

Unless indicated otherwise, documents presented here are not the product of nor are they necessarily endorsed by National Wind Watch. These resource documents are shared here to assist anyone wishing to research the issue of industrial wind power and the impacts of its development. The information should be evaluated by each reader to come to their own conclusions about the many areas of debate. • The copyrights reside with the sources indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations.


Date added:  May 13, 2022
U.K., WildlifePrint storyE-mail story

Impact assessments of wind farms on seabird populations that overlook existing drivers of demographic change should be treated with caution

Abstract – Population viability analyses (PVA) are now routinely used during the consenting process for offshore wind energy developments to assess potential impacts to vulnerable species, such as seabirds. These models are typically based on mean vital rates, such as survival and fecundity, with some level of environmental stochasticity (i.e., temporal variation). However, many species of seabird are experiencing population decline due to temporal (i.e., directional) trends in their vital rates. We assess the prevalence of temporal trends in rates of fecundity for a sentinel species of seabird, the black-legged kittiwake Rissa tridactyla, and examine how accounting for these relationships affects the predictive accuracy of PVA, as well as the projected population response to an extrinsic threat. We found that temporal trends in kittiwake rates of fecundity are widespread, and that including these trends in PVA assessments dramatically influences the projected rate of population decline. We advocate that model validation become a prerequisite step in seabird PVA assessments to identify potential biases influencing the projected population response. We also argue that environmental factors driving current population dynamics need to be incorporated in PVA impact assessments as potential “worst-case” scenarios. These findings have immediate application for improving and reducing uncertainty in impact assessments conducted as part of the consenting process for offshore wind energy developments.

a) Temporal (i.e., directional) trends in rates of fecundity are widespread amongst populations of kittiwakes in the UK and Ireland. Colonies with significant temporal trends in fecundity shown as red circles, those with stable fecundity shown as blue triangles. Skomer (South Wales) shown as an open red circle. (b) Fecundity of kittiwakes on Skomer Island declined at a constant rate between 1989 and 2020. Dashed line shows a linear regression fitted through the data. (c) We found high variation in the strength of temporal trends estimated using colony-specific Poisson GLMs. Slope coefficient values shown with standard error. Colonies with directional fecundity shown as red circles, those with stable fecundity shown as blue triangles. Skomer shown as open red circle. Gray dashed line at zero for reference.

Catharine Horswill, ZSL Institute of Zoology, London, Centre for Biodiversity and Environmental Research, Department of Genetics, Evolution and Environment, University College London, and Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, UK
Julie A.O. Miller, Marine Scotland Science, Marine Laboratory, Aberdeen, UK
Matt J. Wood, School of Natural and Social Sciences, University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham, UK

Conservation Science and Practice. 13 March 2022. doi: 10.1111/csp2.12644

Download original document: “Impact assessments of wind farms on seabird populations that overlook existing drivers of demographic change should be treated with caution

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Date added:  April 12, 2022
Africa, Europe, WildlifePrint storyE-mail story

Hotspots in the grid: Avian sensitivity and vulnerability to collision risk from energy infrastructure interactions in Europe and North Africa

Author:  Gauld, Jethro; et al.

Abstract

Wind turbines and power lines can cause bird mortality due to collision or electrocution. The biodiversity impacts of energy infrastructure (EI) can be minimised through effective landscape-scale planning and mitigation. The identification of high-vulnerability areas is urgently needed to assess potential cumulative impacts of EI while supporting the transition to zero carbon energy.

We collected GPS location data from 1,454 birds from 27 species susceptible to collision within Europe and North Africa and identified areas where tracked birds are most at risk of colliding with existing EI. Sensitivity to EI development was estimated for wind turbines and power lines by calculating the proportion of GPS flight locations at heights where birds were at risk of collision and accounting for species’ specific susceptibility to collision. We mapped the maximum collision sensitivity value obtained across all species, in each 5 × 5 km grid cell, across Europe and North Africa. Vulnerability to collision was obtained by overlaying the sensitivity surfaces with density of wind turbines and transmission power lines.

Results: Exposure to risk varied across the 27 species, with some species flying consistently at heights where they risk collision. For areas with sufficient tracking data within Europe and North Africa, 13.6% of the area was classified as high sensitivity to wind turbines and 9.4% was classified as high sensitivity to transmission power lines. Sensitive areas were concentrated within important migratory corridors and along coastlines. Hotspots of vulnerability to collision with wind turbines and transmission power lines (2018 data) were scattered across the study region with highest concentrations occurring in central Europe, near the strait of Gibraltar and the Bosporus in Turkey.
Synthesis and applications: We identify the areas of Europe and North Africa that are most sensitive for the specific populations of birds for which sufficient GPS tracking data at high spatial resolution were available. We also map vulnerability hotspots where mitigation at existing EI should be prioritised to reduce collision risks. As tracking data availability improves our method could be applied to more species and areas to help reduce bird-EI conflicts.

Jethro G. Gauld (School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK), João P. Silva, Philip W. Atkinson, Paul Record, Marta Acácio, Volen Arkumarev, Julio Blas, Willem Bouten, Niall Burton, Inês Catry, Jocelyn Champagnon, Gary D. Clewley, Mindaugas Dagys, Olivier Duriez, Klaus-Michael Exo, Wolfgang Fiedler, Andrea Flack, Guilad Friedemann, Johannes Fritz, Clara Garcia-Ripolles, Stefan Garthe, Dimitri Giunchi, Atanas Grozdanov, Roi Harel, Elizabeth M. Humphreys, René Janssen, Andrea Kölzsch, Olga Kulikova, Thomas K. Lameris, Pascual López-López, Elizabeth A. Masden, Flavio Monti, Ran Nathan, Stoyan Nikolov, Steffen Oppel, Hristo Peshev, Louis Phipps, Ivan Pokrovsky, Viola H. Ross-Smith, Victoria Saravia, Emily S. Scragg, Andrea Sforzi, Emilian Stoynov, Chris Thaxter, Wouter Van Steelant, Mariëlle van Toor, Bernd Vorneweg, Jonas Waldenström, Martin Wikelski, Ramūnas Žydelis, Aldina M.A. Franco

Journal of Applied Biology. First published: 11 April 2022
doi: 10.1111/1365-2664.14160

Download original document: “Hotspots in the grid: Avian sensitivity and vulnerability to collision risk from energy infrastructure interactions in Europe and North Africa

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Date added:  March 8, 2022
Germany, Photos, Technology, VideosPrint storyE-mail story

Beton und Stahl für den Windrad-Bau in der Wilstermarsch [Concrete and steel for wind turbine foundations]

Author:  Schleswig-Holstein Magazin

Die Arbeiten am Fundament dauern noch bis Ende des Jahres. Im Hintergrund der Ankerkorb für das 122 Meter hohe Windrad. © NDR, Foto: Sven Jachmann

Der Beton kommt über eine meterhohe Pumpe. © NDR, Foto: Sven Jachmann

Für die Fundamente wird er über den Ausleger der Betonpumpe verteilt. © NDR, Foto: Sven Jachmann

51 Pfeiler wurden für das Windrad-Fundament in den Boden gerammt. © NDR, Foto: Sven Jachmann

Auf diesen sogenannten Ankerkorb wird später der Mast der Windanleger montiert. Vorher wird der Bereich der Stahlstreben bis zum oberen Rand des Korbs mit Beton ausgegossen. © NDR, Foto: Sven Jachmann

Der geflochtene Ankerkorb bildet das Fundament der Windkraftanlage. © Siemens GAMESA

06.12.2021 | Schleswig-Holstein Magazin

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Date added:  February 11, 2022
Health, Netherlands, NoisePrint storyE-mail story

Geluid van industriële windturbines: De relatie met gezondheid [Industrial wind turbine noise: the association with human health]

[English abstract] Climate targets will provide the Netherlands with more and higher industrial wind turbines that produce various ‘side effects’, including noise pollution and annoyance. Especially low-frequency noise and infrasonic vibrations can be detected more than 10 km away. In neighbouring residential areas, long-term exposure, especially at night, leads to sleep disturbances, with secondary symptoms, that may be associated with, for example, delay in cognitive development of children. More research is needed.

Jan A.P.M. de Laat, clinical physicist/audiologist, Audiologisch Centrum (KNO), LUMC, Leiden
Wilco Alteveer, civil engineer, Utrecht
A.J.J. (Ronald) Maas, non-practising vestibulologist, Louw Feenstra, ENT specialist and philosopher, afd. Keel-, neus- en oorheelkunde, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam
Sylvia van Manen, general practitioner and mental health care physician, Haspel Foundation, ’s-Hertogenbosch

Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde, 2021;165:D5999

Download original document: “Geluid van industriële windturbines: De relatie met gezondheid

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