Wind farms and birds. There have been reports of bird deaths circulating since the advent of wind farms in America with claims that wind power kills and therefore is not an ideal alternative to traditional fossil fuel power plants. Well, yes there have been and continues to be fatalities to birds attributed to wind turbines. For that matter there will always be fatal encounters between the two with the turbines coming out ahead. With that in mind let us look at some of the other causes of death to birds and compare numbers.
The rumours of large scale bird fatalities were just that, rumours. Wind power based electric has the lowest impact on not just the environment, but also on wildlife, including birds. Wind power is here to stay. The wind is more than a renewable form of energy, it is a constant form. Wind is 24 hours a day every day. Through innovation and advances currently being made wind generated energy will soon be inexpensive enough for the average homeowner to install and utilize. <Wind Energy Myths> There is and will continue to be backroom politics ( lobbyists ) fighting to keep energy choices as they have been for the last one hundred years, but that is a fight that in the end will be lost. This fight against alternative and renewable options has not been limited to the USA. Looking at the above chart windows kill more birds than wind turbines, hunters, power lines and cars combined. In Australia the Abbot Government has also been showing favor to the fossil fuel industry. <The Conversation.com>
Big energy has mostly taken an anti-renewable energy stance as they feel threatened by the very existence of alternatives. I would’ve thought they would’ve been the first to invest heavily in renewable energy technology as the cost vs profit potential in the long term far out distances the inherited cost vs profit of the status quot, but to do so would require an initial investment in research and development. Development is not part of the corporate plan within these large internationals. Unfortunately the world’s corporate giants have focused solely on maximizing their daily bottom line at the expense of their long term sustainability. This short shortsightedness and hesitation on their part is proving to be beneficial economically to small to mid size companies and start ups. The smaller entities are where innovation and real world improvements come from. Following the charts below we see the growth in numbers of wind turbines and the number of parts manufactures currently operating in the US. That represents a lot more jobs than the Keystone pipeline is promising. Add to that what happens when a turbine malfunctions compared to a pipeline full of bitumen? One is infinitely easier to clean up, cheaper too.
The choice of how and where we progress ultimately is ours, not there’s. It is our money they are after. How and where we spend it is our choice.