Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Wind turbines kill 440,000 birds each year in the US alone

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reports that wind turbines kill 440,000 birds each year, including many protected and endangered species. In addition wind turbines kill a huge number of bats, which are important for insect control and plant pollination. And the number of killed animals will increase with every new wind turbine.

But the proponents of  wind turbines could not care less. Sterling Burnett, a senior fellow at the National Center for Policy Analysis comments:

“If coal-fired, nuclear, or natural gas power plants killed federally protected golden eagles, they would be shut down. If you or I killed a federally protected species, we’d be thrown in jail. Yet for some reason, wind farms are given a free pass. This has been going on for more than 20 years now,” Burnett said.
HawkWatch International warns a single proposed wind farm project in Wyoming will cause 700 raptor deaths each year, including 200 golden eagle kills annually. With only 30,000 golden eagles in the entire United States, HawkWatch says wind power projects are rendering populations of the birds unsustainable.
A newly released U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service field report stated nearly 500 bird carcasses were discovered in a mere two-week span at the Laurel Mountain wind farm in West Virginia.
Wildlife groups point out carcasses found at the foot of wind turbines represent merely a fraction of the birds that killed by the machines. Other victims of turbine strikes aren’t killed immediately but die shortly after the birds have flown away to other locations.

Mice, Rats Safe to Thrive
In addition to the avian deaths, wind turbines create a safety zone for rodent breeding because birds of prey cannot patrol wind turbine areas. Communities in the vicinity of wind farms report disturbing spikes in the mouse and rat populations.

“They may figure out a way someday to prevent the wind turbines from killing birds, but the real problem is where you build the farms. In order for wind power to make sense, you have to build the turbines in areas where there is a lot of wind, and this just happens to be in the flight paths of migratory birds, which don’t just flap their wings to get where they’re going, they ride the thermal wind currents,” said Burnett.

Read the entire article here

No comments: