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Help stop wind farms on state-owned lands  

Credit:  The Tribune-Democrat, tribune-democrat.com 28 February 2012 ~~

Conservationists should urge their state legislators to oppose Sen. John Wozniak’s SB 1425. This bill would lease portions of Gallitzin State Forest for industrial wind plant development.

The environmental benefits of wind energy development, in the mid-Atlantic area in general and on Pennsylvania state lands in particular, are small, relative to the negative consequences, which include habitat fragmentation and mortality to birds and bats.

The environmental impacts of wind energy are considerable. Mortality to birds and bats has been of particular concern.

Bat mortality from wind turbines has been particularly high.

With wind energy development expanding on private lands in Pennsylvania, the forested ridge tops of state-owned lands will become even more critical for birds, bats and other species that utilize these habitats.

Another important, and often overlooked, impact of wind development is habitat fragmentation and its associated effects. These effects include reduced habitat area, habitat isolation and loss of species from an area, disruption of dispersal, increased edge effects and loss of core habitat and facilitation of invasive species.

Because natural resource agency lands are among the last remaining large blocks of unfragmented land in Pennsylvania, these lands are particularly in need of protection.

The environmental benefits of wind energy development on natural resource agency lands in Pennsylvania are negligible compared to the environmental consequences. These lands should remain closed to wind energy development.

Conservationists should urge their state legislators to oppose SB 1425.

Dr. Stan Kotala


Source:  The Tribune-Democrat, tribune-democrat.com 28 February 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher 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. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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