Officials Crack Down on Wind Farms that Kill Birds and Bats

Utility companies installed thousands of new turbines last year and are on track to install even more this year, generating pollution-free electricity whenever the wind blows. But even as the turbines help utilities reduce carbon emissions and pollution, they’re causing a new problem: Those churning blades kill hundreds of thousands of birds annually, including federally protected golden eagles.

“It’s really kind of discouraging right now,” said Brian Rutledge, executive director of Audubon Wyoming.

Now, federal wildlife officials are cracking down on wind farms caught killing bats and birds. A peer-reviewed study issued last summer estimated turbines kill as many as 368,000 birds annually.

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