John Anderson, AWEA, wrote a letter earlier on eagle deaths and wind turbines.
He says “climate change caused by CO2 emission are the single most threat to wildlife”, thus implying we must cut back or stop using fossil fuels at all costs. It follows that we must do whatever is needed, even if we end up sacrificing every eagle on the planet. We must respond to this monstrous threat. Never mind that temperatures have been flat for over 15 years while CO2 continued to increase and that the IPCC’s 95% confidence level seems to have been pulled out of thin air. Go ahead and sacrifice eagles.
He speaks of the eagle take permits. Yes, they can be used by other industries. So far as I can tell, up to 5% of the local eagle population can be “taken”. This means Native Americans wanting the birds for ceremonies, wind plant owners and multiple others share these permits. I can’t wait for the first permit issued to an oil company or a coal mine. According to FSW, Native American use is above that of the wind industry, though there is opposition from tribes concerning allowing the killing of the birds. The tribes consider the birds culturally or spiritually significant.
Mr. Anderson does not mention that part of the opposition to the take permits includes several Native American tribes opposed to these take permits because tribes consider the birds culturally or spiritually significant. (The tribes share in the permits issued.)
Wind turbines cannot and do not decrease CO2 emissions. The wind industry carefully conceals the polluting side–mining in other countries, the amount of materials required for manufacturing, the constant need for maintenance, etc. Plus the backup natural gas plant. Also, rarely mentioned, is how often turbines are shut down because other power sources are cheaper (but the operators are still paid) and that some wind plant operators, such as New Era Wind Farm in Minnesota suggested they would turn off the turbines when there was a high concentration of eagles in the area. So to save the eagles from climate change, we turn off the turbines and fire up the fossil fuel plant?
Mr. Anderson says the permits are not a license to kill. He is correct—it simply makes legal the now illegal killing of the birds by the wind industry. Turbines will continue to kill eagles just as they always have, but now wind companies avoid any possibility of fines or prosecution for the “permitted” ones.
We should just overlook the dead raptors, pay billions for a marginal, ineffective energy source to save the planet from a non-existent threat, right?