Posts tagged: Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area

Wind Farms Pose Threat to Rare Eagles

The only requirement for this license to kill is that wind farm operators show they are making some effort to try not to kill eagles. I haven’t heard of anything that can be done to prevent eagle deaths once a wind turbine is built, so the requirement may simply be to donate some money to […]

Eagle Deaths at Wind Turbines Widespread, Undercounted

Though California and Wyoming lead the nation in eagle deaths at wind turbine facilities, wind turbines are killing bald and golden eagles nationwide, and the death toll is mounting. That’s according to Dr. Joel Pagel, a longtime raptor biologist now working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the lead author of a recent […]

Wind Turbines: New Study Documents High Bird and Bat Kills

In his new study, Smallwood states: I estimated 888,000 bat and 573,000 bird fatalities/year (including 83,000 raptor fatalities) at 51,630 megawatt (MW) of installed wind-energy capacity in the United States in 2012. He explains: Projecting estimates of [bird fatalities per megawatt per year] to the estimated installed capacity of wind energy in the United States […]

Wind Farm Faces Fine Over Eagle Death

When a golden eagle was killed at the 66-turbine Spring Valley Wind Farm near Ely, Nevada, in February, wind farm operator Pattern Energy reportedly was prompt in notifying authorities of the death and already had mitigation measures in place to protect birds and bats. Regardless, Pattern now faces a $200,000 fine over the incident because […]

Eagles in the Wind Turbines

Altamont Pass was built in the 1970s and has about 5,000 relatively small wind turbines, compared to more modern wind turbines with fan blades as long as 300 feet. Novosak said that between 2005 and 2010 it is estimated anywhere from 55 to 94 golden eagles were killed each year, as well as upwards of […]

Hiding the Slaughter – Bird Mortality

Since the early 1980s, the industry has known there is no way its propeller-style turbines could ever be safe for raptors. With exposed blade tips spinning in open space at speeds up to 200 mph, it was impossible. Wind developers also knew they would have a public relations nightmare if people ever learned how many […]

Monday March 18th, 2013 in , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Hiding the Slaughter – Bird Mortality

Big Wind & Avian Mortality (Part II: Hiding the Problem)

Developing Methods to Reduce Bird Mortality in the Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area also looked at the placement of carcasses in relation to turbine types. It documented that the distances carcasses were found from turbine towers increased significantly as turbine megawatt ratings and blade lengths increased. Based on a sample of about 800 carcasses, the report […]

Friday March 15th, 2013 in , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Big Wind & Avian Mortality (Part II: Hiding the Problem)

Big Wind & Avian Mortality (Part I: Problem Identification)

In 1984, the California Energy Commission concluded in regard to the state’s wind industry: “[M]any institutional, engineering, environmental and economic issues must be resolved before the industry is secure and its growth can be assured.” Though it was between the lines, the primary environmental issue alluded to was the extreme hazard that wind turbines posed […]