[…] Bats eat insects, saving farmers billions of dollars in pest control each year, but they generally do not get much attention. No one was even looking for bats under turbines until 2003, according to wildlife biologist Ed Arnett, currently a senior scientist at the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. But on routine checks for dead hawks and eagles under West Virginia turbines that summer, surveyors found an estimated 2,000 dead bats. The discovery prompted creation of the Bat and Wind Energy Cooperative – a consortium of federal agencies, the wind energy association and Bat Conservation International. The consortium hired Arnett in 2004 to conduct the first major studies of why turbines kill bats and to find solutions…
Read it all, it’s at The Scientific American.
[…] The situation right now puts Hein and other conservationists in a difficult position. “We see the impact of climate change on bats, and so we’re in favor of renewable energy,” Hein says. “It’s unfortunate that one of those—wind energy—has this negative impact.” He is frustrated that industry has not acted more quickly on existing studies but acknowledges “it’s hard to get an industry to move on anything very rapidly.” In the meantime he and the consortium will keep searching for the ultimate environmental sweet spot.
Good for them.