The Anonymous Widower

Birds And Offshore Renewable Energy

I have worried about this for some time, as die-hard wind farm opponents use birds being scythed to pieces in wind farms as an emotional reason for not building wind farms.

I searched the Internet and found this academic report from the University of Rhode Island, which is entitled How Are Birds Affected by the Block Island Wind Farm and How Do They Interact With the Wind Turbines?.

Note.

  1. Block Island Wind Farm is a mildly controversial 30 MW wind farm off the coast of Rhode Island.
  2. Block Island wind farm is the first commercial offshore wind farm in the United States.

The report gives three ways about how birds interact with wind farms.

Birds Fly Out Of The Way

First, many birds do not experience any interaction with the turbines at all as they fly either at a higher altitude or closer to the shore than the turbines’ locations.

Wind Farms Become A Food Source

The second interaction between birds and offshore wind turbines is a positive one that has been documented throughout Europe; but, with only the Block Island Wind Farm, it is too early to document in the United States. Researchers have found that the base of a wind turbine can create artificial reefs that act as an attractive site to both fish and shellfish. These artificial reefs provide a feeding ground for certain species of birds as the turbines essentially become a central habitat for many bird species’ prey.

Displacement Of The Birds

The final interaction that birds have with offshore wind turbines is displacement. This primary negative effect is experienced when wind turbines are constructed in areas that birds would naturally like to be; but, due to the structures, no longer have access to. To put it simply, he says, “if you put the turbines where the birds want to be, you take away these areas from the birds”.

Conclusion

It appears to me, that if you are putting up wind farms, whether they are offshore or onshore, that it is essential you do your research.

As in this case, experts from the local university are often a good resource to call upon.

 

April 3, 2022 - Posted by | Energy | , ,

3 Comments »

  1. Spiteful vandalism.
    But what about the second partially completed plane last heard of about a decade or so ago. Is it still in storage?
    It’d a be totemic symbol of the resurrection of the Ukraine once this war is ended. Perhaps people like Bezos and Musk could chip in and finance it, I’m sure it would be small change to these guys. Who knows they could actually use it in the way that it was originally intended; for shipping space vehicles.

    Comment by fammorris | April 3, 2022 | Reply

    • I think you put this in the wrong place! But I agree with it!

      Comment by AnonW | April 3, 2022 | Reply

      • Yes I embarrassed to say I realised as soon as I hit the post comment button

        Comment by fammorris | April 3, 2022


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