Friday, November 11, 2011

Wind Turbines are Not Causing Mass Bird Extinction

The Reality: Wind power is far less harmful to birds than the fossil fuels it displaces. Incidental losses of individual birds at turbine sites will always be an extremely small fraction of bird deaths caused by human activities. 

  • Wind is the only source of energy that does not present population-level risks to birds, according to a study of coal, oil, natural gas, nuclear, hydroelectric, and wind power. [3]
  • Wind turbines are estimated to cause less than three out of every 100,000 human-related bird deaths in the U.S., and will never cause more than a very small fraction no matter how extensively wind power is used in the future, the National Academy of Sciences found. [4]
  • Wind power causes far fewer losses of birds (approximately 108,000 a year) than buildings (550 million), power lines (130 million), cars (80 million), poisoning by pesticides (67 million), domestic cats (at least 10 million), and radio and cell towers (4.5 million). [5]
  • Non-renewable energy sources “pose higher risks to wildlife” than renewable sources. Coal - which wind directly replaces - “is by far the largest contributor” to wildlife risks. [6]

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