Presentation tackles turbine fatalities in birds, bats

Kim Linnell, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks conservation technician and lead staffer for the Spion Kop Wind Farm monitoring project east of Great Falls, will present information about wind farm/bird impacts and the status of the Spion Kop project at the Yellowstone Valley Audubon Society meeting Nov. 20. Her presentation will include a review of wind energy in Montana, FWP’s collaboration with NorthWestern Energy, the components of post-construction monitoring, current status of the Sion Kop project and future work.
Although wind energy developments help reduce carbon emissions, they are not entirely environmental neutral. Bird and bat fatalities from collisions with wind turbines have been documented at all wind farms across the country. At the conclusion of the first year of monitoring at the Spion Kop site it has been found impact to birds to be low relative to other wind farms in the west. However the observed bat fatality rate met the threshold established, so an additional year of monitoring has been agreed upon.
The Linnell presentation will begin at 7 p.m. on Nov. 20, at the Mayflower Congregational Church on the corner of Rehberg and Poly Dr. The public is welcome and there is no admission fee.
For more information about YVAS and the Nov. 20 event, visit its website at yvaudubon.org or contact Steve Regele at (406)962-3115 or smregele@gmail.com

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