Study reveals minimal wind turbine effect on bats

Posted on March 12, 2008. Filed under: Wind |


From an article by Kevin Murphy in the Fond du Lac Reporter:

MADISON — The Blue Sky Green Field Wind Farm poses no greater risk to bats than other wind farms in the region, according to a study released last week by the Wisconsin Public Service Commission. The We Energies wind farm, under construction about 15 miles northeast of the city of Fond du Lac in the town of Marshfield and Calumet, was studied after Department of Natural Resources officials noticed higher than expected bat mortality rates associated with wind farms operating in other states.The pre-construction study by Western Eco-Systems Technology of Cheyenne, Wyo., was conducted over several months last year to develop “baseline” information about the numbers and types of bats in the area, said Shari Kozlowsky, a DNR conservation biologist.

Forward Energy, which has a wind farm under construction south of Fond du Lac, wasn’t required to conduct a pre-construction bat study, said Kozlowsky.

“Except for one species, bats aren’t an endangered species in Wisconsin and not subject to wildlife protection measures, but their numbers are in decline across the state due to loss of habitat…This study will allow us to compare what those numbers are before and after the project becomes operational,” she said.

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