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February 12, 2007

Wind Turbines Seem Safe for Birds

Denmark's National Environmental Research Institute deployed a Thermal Animal Detection System as part of a $15 million study of Denmark's large offshore wind farms. The system employs heat-activated infrared video cameras which recorded bird collisions.

The first results released showed that seabirds for the most part avoided the offshore windfarms. "There had been suggestions that enormous numbers of birds would be killed," says Robert Furness, a seabird specialist at the University of Glasgow, who chaired the study's scientific advisory panel. "There's a greater feeling now among European politicians that marine wind farms are not going to be a major ecological problem, and therefore going ahead with construction is not going to raise lots of political difficulties."

More about this study can be found at MIT's Technology Review.

I always wondered about this FUD people against windmills have been spreading. Anyone who spends time watching birds, know that birds certainly don't like moving objects, especially noisy ones. Windmills are anything but silent or difficult to see. If birds blindly flew into objects large tall objects [like trees or buildings] our sidewalks would be littered with dead birds. Why do we think they're going to have trouble avoiding windmills?

There needs to be a similar study of windmills affects (or presumably lack of it) on birds here in Vermont. Personally, I'm not against seeing windmills on our ridge lines and I wouldn't mind having them in "my backyard." Its certainly a better solution than more coal or oil fired power plants.

Posted in Today's Headlines , Vermont by usrbingeek at 2007-02-12 19:13 ET (GMT-5) | 0 Comments | Permalink


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