A proposed wind power project in Kiserian, Kajiado county, has run into trouble after conservationists rejected it, saying it could wipe out migratory birds.
BirdLife International, Nature Kenya, Kenya Bird of Prey Trust and the Peregrine Fund say the project threatens critically endangered bird species.
In a statement on Tuesday last week, they said the project is close to the nesting sites of two species of endangered vultures and an important flyway for a huge number of migratory birds.
“Just 14 kilometres from Kwenia cliffs – the third largest nesting site of Rüppell’s vultures in Kenya – and 10km from the white-backed vulture colony, these wind turbine blades could severely hurt these species, which are on the edge of extinction,” the conservationists said.
With a generation capacity of 100MW of clean, renewable, electrical energy, the project is the second largest wind power project in Kenya.
It is situated in Esilanke southwest of Nairobi and covers 70 square kilometres.
The group said a recent survey showed the two colonies regularly contain more than 80 pairs of nesting vultures and both species frequently fly over and occasionally forage at the proposed site.
The birds would be at risk of colliding with wind turbines, they said.
The Egyptian vultures in the area have become extinct, they said. However, it still holds an impressive number of cliff-dwelling large falcons and Verreaux’s eagles.
Nature Kenya executive director Paul Matiku said the decision to build the plant at the site violates Kenya’s commitment to the Convention on Migratory Species.
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