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Wind Power News: Wildlife


These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch. They are the products of and owned by the organizations or individuals noted and are shared here according to “fair use” and “fair dealing” provisions of copyright law.

January 18, 2022 • CaliforniaPrint storyE-mail story

Wind turbines pose severe threat to migrating bats

After undergoing sleek upgrades over the past two decades, the iconic wind turbines at Altamont Pass are killing a lot fewer birds. But they’re still claiming the lives of another important creature of the sky: bats. As wind farms become an increasingly important source of clean energy, there are growing concerns among scientists about what all the new spinning blades will mean for bats  – particularly the hoary bat, the most widespread migratory bat species in North America. The controversy . . . Complete story »

December 14, 2021 • GermanyPrint storyE-mail story

Wind turbines kill mostly female and juvenile bats

Many bats die at wind turbines when colliding with the spinning blades. Currently it is unclear whether all age cohorts or sexes are equally vulnerable. A comparison of age, sex and geographic origin of Nathusius’ pipistrelles killed at wind turbines and living conspecifics from nearby populations now reveals that juveniles are killed more frequently than adults compared to their proportion in local populations. Females are killed more frequently than males—yet in line with their higher proportion in local populations. The . . . Complete story »

December 10, 2021 • CaliforniaPrint storyE-mail story

Wind power lawsuit cites eagle killings in Altamont

Alameda County – The National Audubon Society and several local Audubon branches have filed a suit against Alameda County to block development of a new 80-megawatt wind turbine project in the Altamont Pass area. The lawsuit alleges that in giving approval to the project, known as Mulqueeny Ranch, the county has not carried out needed environmental reviews or worked to ensure adequate protection for birds and bats. According to the Audubon Society, the Altamont Pass area is home to the densest . . . Complete story »

December 3, 2021 • IrelandPrint storyE-mail story

Permission for west Donegal wind farm refused over concerns about impact on wildlife

Donegal County Council has refused planning permission for an eight-turbine wind farm near Glenties citing concerns about the potential impact on rare birdlife and conservation areas. Cuilfeach Teoranta applied in October to build eight turbines in the townlands of Graffy, Meenamanragh and Dalraghan More near Glenties. The application attracted dozens of objections which raised concerns about the potential impact of the wind farm on the landscape and wildlife. In rejecting the application, Donegal County Council said was not in a . . . Complete story »

November 25, 2021 • SwitzerlandPrint storyE-mail story

Swiss wind park ordered to scale back to protect birds

A new wind park in Switzerland must scale back its plans to deliver renewable energy in order to protect vulnerable bird species, the country’s supreme court ruled on Wednesday. Plans for the new wind park, in the Grenchenberg region in the Jura mountains, had sparked opposition from ornithologists and conservationists, who argued it would interfere with local populations of woodlarks and peregrine falcons, deemed vulnerable in Switzerland. The wind park had aimed to deliver 16 megawatts of energy by 2023 . . . Complete story »

November 20, 2021 • CaliforniaPrint storyE-mail story

The National Audubon Society sues Bay Area county over new wind turbine project: ‘A population sink’

The National Audubon Society is suing Alameda County over its recent approval of a controversial new wind turbine facility at Altamont Pass. It’s been described as a “poorly planned project” that’s a threat to birds and bats in the area due to its lack of sufficient environmental review, according to a press release shared by the organization Wednesday. Commissioned in 1981, The Altamont Pass wind farm was one of the first of its kind in the country and is also . . . Complete story »

October 13, 2021 • ScotlandPrint storyE-mail story

Underwater power cables are ‘mesmerising’ brown crabs

Underwater power cables laid along the sea floors for offshore wind farms are ‘mesmerising’ brown crabs and causing biological changes that could affect their migration habits, a new study reveals. Experts in Scotland found exposure to electromagnetism triggered ‘behavioural and physiological responses’ in around 60 brown crabs at the St Abbs Marine Station. This causes cellular changes in the crab species, affecting blood cells and possibly even making them more prone to infection, they warn. Oddly, the cables for offshore . . . Complete story »

October 6, 2021 • EnglandPrint storyE-mail story

Sea bird concerns set wind farm plans set back six months

Plans to double the capacity of two Norfolk wind farms have been set back six months so that its developer can further investigate their impact on seabirds. Equinor, the Norwegian firm behind the Sheringham Shoal and Dudgeon wind farms off Cromer and Sheringham, has said it would not apply for a Development Consent Order (DCO) until early summer next year instead of by the end of 2021, as originally planned. Kari-Hege Mørk, project director, said: “Throughout the development of the . . . Complete story »

August 29, 2021 • WashingtonPrint storyE-mail story

WA puts hawk from Tri-Cities area on endangered list. Wind turbines partly to blame

The largest hawk in North America has been declared an endangered species in Washington state as fewer of them have been breeding in Benton and Franklin counties. Friday the Washington state Department of Fish and Wildlife Commission voted unanimously to move the ferruginous hawk from the state’s threatened species list to endangered. status. The change will bring more visibility toward the decline of the species, said Commissioner Kim Thorburn. It also could prompt more steps to protect the hawks. The . . . Complete story »

August 5, 2021 • MichiganPrint storyE-mail story

Scotia Wind Farm permit denied

Several state and federal agencies are opposed to a wind farm proposed for Adams and Stanton Townships. Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) cited concerns over potential effects on local bat populations as being the main driver in denying a permit to Circle Power. James Mihelcic from the Guardians of the Keweenaw Ridge says the group is preparing for more work ahead. In their application, Circle Power had already talked about possible sites in Gratiot Lake and . . . Complete story »

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