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Unplanned wind power projects biggest threat to fowls  

Credit:  Zubair Qureshi | Pakistan Observer | May 11, 2015 | pakobserver.net ~~

Wind turbines installed in Norway alone account for bird deaths ranging from 10,000 to 40,000 a year and the number is much larger than the birds killed by cats or glass walls of sky-rise buildings. Worldwide, the annual number of birds’ casualty due to power generation hits an appalling figure of one billion.

These startling figures were shared by eminent ornithologist of the country and Director of Pakistan Wildlife Foundation Safwan Shahab Ahmad during a talk given at the Pakistan Youth Hostel here on Sunday.

Safwan cautioned against any unplanned power project installed along the route of migratory birds as many European countries are taking steps to secure that route for the maintenance and equilibrium of their Eco system.

The recent wind energy project near Badin fortunately does not pose any such threat, said the young environmentalist. A number of youths from various localities of Pakistan currently residing at the youth hostel attended the lecture and asked Mr Safwan a number of questions pertaining to life span of local fowls, their breed and threats to them.

Safwan delighted the audience with valuable information about migratory birds, their use by different nations for different purposes. Birds he said are the most useful anti-pollution nature-preserving agents and their extinction can disturb the world’s Eco system.

In Pakistan alone, extinction of vultures (99 percent of them are eliminated from our country) has led to a number of complications with regard to disposing dead animals. However, vulture rehabilitation project in Kala Bagh under the supervision of Malik Waheed the current Nawab (baron) will certainly revive vultures’ habitat and they will resume their job as natural predator, said Mr Safwan. About countries that befriend birds he said Japan, the US, France, China in shot all the nations of the world love, domesticate and promote migratory birds, he said. With rising focus on wind energy threat to birds’ living has increased, he said. “Our motto should be Make Energy Bird Friendly,” he said giving example of Norway wind form which has remained the biggest killing ground for migratory birds. It is 500-km long and 300-km wide and thousands of birds daily lose their life by entering its fields. For the first time Norway discovered the consequences of this project. However, they rectified it by shifting creating a warning system for migratory birds, he said. Besides power lines, pesticides, glass buildings, cats, overhunting and changing environment conditions also cause migratory birds deaths, he said.

To a question, he said birds migrate either to avoid lack of cover during winter season or in search of food. However, the exact cause of their migration is yet not known. At the end he advised the youth to be nature conservationists and value the wildlife around them.

Earlier Qazi Humayun, Member Board of Trustees PYHA welcomed Mr Safwan. He highlighted Pakistan Youth Hostel Association’s activities in promoting awareness among youth about nature, tourism and adventure sports besides providing them quality residential facility at discounted rates.

Source:  Zubair Qureshi | Pakistan Observer | May 11, 2015 | pakobserver.net

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

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