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U.S. Audubon Society Alarmed Over Raptor Turbine Kills

The National Audubon Society in the United States has begun a fund-raising campaign to help save the raptors being killed by wind power generation projects in the U.S. Here is a message from Audubon VP Government Relations, Michael Daulton.

The Wind Challenge

Properly-sited wind power is a critical part of America’s clean energy future, and an important part of our strategy for solving the threat of global warming. But wind turbines can be a real threat to eagles and other birds. The same windswept ridges raptors favor for soaring are also ideal places for electricity-generating wind farms. The tip of a giant turbine blade moves faster than 100 mph—much too fast for even an eagle eye to perceive. Thousands of hawks, eagles, and other migrating birds collide with wind turbines every year. The results are almost always fatal.

Audubon was among the first organizations to raise the alarm, and to work to find the right balance between the need for renewable energy and the need to protect amazing birds like the Swainson’s Hawk and the Golden Eagle. Bird-lovers like you have been actively engaged both on the ground and at the federal policy level to protect birds and keep eagles soaring.

  • Audubon experts played a key role on a 22-person federal advisory committee that spent three years developing the first-ever nationwide guidelines aimed at minimizing the threat of wind power to eagles and all other birds.
  • As you read this, an Audubon team in Washington D.C. is in active negotiations with the wind energy industry, the White House and key federal agencies to forge a permitting process directed solely at the conservation of eagles.

Meanwhile, Audubon members are leading the fight to oppose poorly-sited wind farms and to guide wind power away from vulnerable bird habitats. Local chapters, like Golden Gate Audubon in California, have won landmark victories for birds at places like Altamont Pass in central California and other sites where turbines put eagles and other raptors at risk. These are the real heroes of Audubon, who inspire me every day by making a real difference for birds like the Golden Eagle.
We object to the idea that wind power generation is the answer to the need for power in anything but an industrial application, but we applaud the recognition of the serious and probably irreversible harm to the natural environment.
For more information, go to the website at: http://www.audubon.org


From a post by  Wind Concerns Ontario Blog

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12 Million Migratory Birds at Risk from Lake Ontario Wind Turbines

According to an article by journalist Paul Schliesmann, in the Kingston Whig-Standard on Friday, August 24, 2012,  a recent report by the Kingston Field Naturalists states that an estimated 12 million migratory birds will be put at risk if two large offshore wind turbine projects are built in Lake Ontario.

Three members of the volunteer organization who conducted a year-long, unpaid study are particularly concerned about two offshore projects that would see the a total of 268 turbines planted to the north and south of Main Duck Island, a natural stopping off point for hundreds of species.

“We think 12 million is low because it’s based on birds being studied at Prince Edward Point. The ones which don’t stop at Prince Edward Point aren’t being included yet,” said Chris Hargreaves, who worked on the report with Erwin Batalla and Barrie Gilbert.

Read the rest of this informative article in thewhig.com

25 Wind Turbines Relocated due to Raptor Concerns

Last-minute changes to the layout of a $400 million wind farm in northern Montana are planned in response to concerns about raptors in the area, the San Francisco-based developer and a Montana conservation group said Thursday.

Rim Rock wind farm is under construction on the Kevin Rim in Glacier and Toole counties. It’s home to the highest concentration of Ferruginous hawks in Montana and nine other species of raptors, including golden eagles.

Greg Copeland, development director for NaturEner USA of San Francisco, said 25 of the 126 turbines planned at Rim Rock will be erected a quarter of a mile away from their original locations.

Read the rest of the story at Great Falls Tribune  http://www.greatfallstribune.com/article/20120817/NEWS01/308160039?gcheck=1&nclick_check=1

 

 

CBC The National reports on turbine threat to birds at Ostrander Point

On Wednesday October 5, the CBC National News team was at Ostrander Point and the Observatory and filmed a Sharp-shinned hawk (Accipiter striatus) caught and banded. Accipiters are small to medium-sized hawks known for their swift flight. This CBC News video  is now available through our online link. 

The CBC has made a major shift in it’s stance toward wind turbines and their relationship to health and property values.  We hope this broadcast  indicates a more pro-active position in their reports about the environmental risks of industrial wind turbines.

The story angle examines the rift between different environmental groups and includes a brief statement from a Gilead Power representative, who vows to shut down the industrial wind turbines if bird deaths occur.  As the CBC notes that the south shore IBA is a major migratory flyway, no doubt Gilead’s turbines will barely run at all.

If this is the case,  perhaps the proposal for installing IWTs in this sensitive area should be abandoned altogether.

Wolfe Island wind turbines cause disappearance of short-eared owl

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Short-eared Owl

By Paul Schliesmann The Whig-Standard

The short-eared owl, listed as a species of special concern in Canada, has all but disappeared from the west end of Wolfe Island. A noted Kingston-area birder says the decline has everything to do with the construction and startup of wind turbines on that part of the island two years ago. “They’re definitely avoiding the area,” said Kurt Hennige, who has been watching and documenting the short-eared populations on Wolfe Island for more than 25 years. 

Read the entire story…