Grassroots environmental groups, such as Save Western Ohio, are expressing serious concerns about the negative environmental impacts of wind power. The groups emphasize several worries:
- According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, wind turbines in the United States annually kill 440,000 bird (Other analysts maintain the number is much larger because FWS compiles the killed count by counting the number of dead birds in the immediate vicinity of the turbines. Some birds, they argue, are mortally wounded but don’t die in the immediate vicinity of the
- Wind turbines kill a large number of bats, though the actual number of kills is hard to quantify.
- Wind farms destroy natural habitats, they require 300 square miles or more of land to produce as much power as a single conventional power plant.
Solar panel arrays are also a problem according to Rich Cimino of the Ohlone Audobon Society.
Cimino testified at a Alameda County (CA) planning meeting which discussed creating a solar panel array near Altamont.
Alameda County should create a raptor refuge in the Altamont to help preserve threatened species there, according to one environmentalist.
In addition, a five-year moratorium on permitting any new solar arrays in the Altamont should be established, because they might drive feeding birds eastward into wind turbines, said Rich Cimino, conservation director for Ohlone Audubon society.
Cimino made the suggestions Jan. 31 at an Alameda County Planning Department meeting in Dublin. It was held to sound out the public on what should be included in the county’s first-ever solar policy.
Cimino told three planning staffers taking comments that a moratorium on new arrays is important.
Raptors feed on rodents living in tall grass on the agricultural lands in the Altamont. If those areas were taken away by the low-grass maintenance needed for solar arrays, the rodents would move east. That would put them closer to wind turbines. More birds would fly into the turbines, said Cimino.
The push to implement President Obama’s energy policy, is not only creating higher gas price and handcuffing the economy but its killing birds. Tweety is not going to be happy.