The Pennsylvania Game Commission just issued it’s WIND ENERGY VOLUNTARY COOPERATION AGREEMENT SECOND SUMMARY REPORT
In case you’re not aware, there are a group of wind companies who voluntarily signed on to the Wind Energy Cooperative Agreement. By signing the agreement, they effectively became the
official foxes guarding the hen house surveyors and reporters of bat and bird kills at their wind business sites. You can read all about that in the full report, which I’ve provided below for your convenience below.
Amazingly, it seems there are a number of companies placing turbines in the Alleghenies who seem happy to be Non-Cooperators. A Non-Cooperator is basically a wind company operating, or planning to operate these massive kill machines in the middle of delicate habitat which chooses not to sign the agreement to help protect the wildlife. Hey! You gotta give them credit for honesty. They don’t seem to give a damn what they whack and don’t mind letting the Game folks know it.
Here’s what the report has to say about this gang:
There are five additional wind energy developers in Pennsylvania with active or proposed wind sites who have not signed the Cooperative Agreement. These companies include a subsidiary of Florida Power & Light Energy, NextEra Energy Resources (five active wind sites), Reading Anthracite (one proposed wind site), STK Renewables (three proposed wind sites), OwnEnergy (two proposed wind sites), and Laurel Highlands Energy (three proposed wind sites). There are an additional eight sites in early stages of project proposal for which the potential developer has not been identified.
The PGC is currently investigating the monitoring efforts and site mortality of bats and birds of those non-Cooperators, prioritized by project site location and risk assessment from the PGC‟s internal reviews. These investigative efforts by the PGC will be directed towards assuring that all projects, including non-Cooperators, are employing feasible measures of protection and minimization of adverse impacts, which are anticipated to occur to the Commonwealth‟s bat and bird resources.
Currently, very few wind developers with active wind sites in Pennsylvania have not signed the PGC Cooperative Agreement and are not conducting post-construction monitoring. The most significant developer not signed into the Cooperative Agreement, that currently has the largest 10 projects, greatest number, and highest risk projects in Pennsylvania, is Florida Power & Light Energy‟s subsidiary, NextEra Energy Resources. Developers that have bat mortality continue to be investigated so the PGC can determine the proper course of action to safeguard and conserve bat and bird species with regard to mortality from wind energy facility operation. In fact, NextEra Energy Resources has received written warnings and several letters from the PGC regarding their post-construction monitoring efforts at their five active wind facilities in Pennsylvania. Each time the PGC has investigated sites not enrolled in the Cooperative Agreement, three times over the last two years, the PGC has found evidence of mortality. Some of the bat carcasses found during these investigations were tested and found to have evidence of barotrauma, indicating the cause of mortality was the operation of the wind facility. The PGC will continue to investigate all wind sites, paying careful attention to those not signed into the Cooperative Agreement, in an effort to further ascertain what avenues, including potential legal action, may be deemed appropriate to safeguard and conserve bat and bird species within the project area.
Plus folks, take a look at the map on Page 12 of the report. My attempt at scanning the page doesn’t really do it justice. Maybe someone can explain how the migratory birds which famously utilize the Appalachian Super Flyway will navigate this maze:
And, if anyone thinks this horror ends at the Pennsylvania State Line, I’ve got a bridge to sell you!
Here’s the full report:
All this is utterly disgusting–and quite predictable. When agencies like this lie down with dogs, they often wake up with fleas. The whole arrangement is totemic of the rotting sinews of government regulators as they dimly enable the dumbest ideas imaginable conjured by the smartest guys in the room–in the process gutting the very mission of the agency.
I believe that independent biologists involved with the Wind Energy Cooperative Agreement pulled out long ago. When Gamesa is listed as one of these so-called “cooperators,” you know there’s a problem. They are building their latest industrial wind farm above Tyrone where it was established by Trish Miller, an independent ornithologist, that golden eagles not only migrate south on that ridge, but that they actually spend time hunting there where the wind farm will be for at least a week. I salute the Game Commission for trying to work with these folks, but I don’t think they can accomplish much. However, they have no alternative given the greed involved in this.