Turbine Kills Bat, Shuts Down Wind Farm

Thirty-five windmills at a wind farm in Pennsylvania,  are no longer running at night since a bat  was found dead under one of the turbines.

According to the Associated Press, the farm was forced to shut down the windmills during the night time hours, after the bat, a supposed endangered species, was found dead in September.

By the way, you read the copy correct.  We’re talking about one dead bat.

The wind farm covers parts of Portage, Washington, and Cresson Townships in Cambria County, and part of Blair County, about 60 miles east of Pittsburgh.

An animal rights group found out about the dead bat and went ballistic, immediately contacting the energy provider.

A spokesman for Duke Energy, which owns the wind farm, says it has an agreement with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to determine whether bats are regularly being harmed by the windmills.  Now Fish and Wildlife is spending taxpayer money to conduct research.

The windmills will likely resume nighttime operation in mid-November, when the bats go into hibernation until spring.  After that, the turbines will probably be shut down again each evening at sunset.

The reduced generation  of electricity from the wind turbines will decrease overall efficiency of the farm, thus causing the cost of this “green” energy source to be even more expensive for the consumer than it already is.

As I share in Climategate, dead birds have been hampering wind farms for years.  In California, home to the oldest and largest wind farm (Altamont, east of San Francisco), millions of dollars in studies, paid for by the utility company,  have been conducted.  Some of the turbines have been turned off, some have been modified, others see limited use.

Brian Sussman

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. R. Stevenson says

    I thought bats were pretty crafty when it came to not flying into things…and…they only fly around in the dark too! Maybe the bat just dropped dead from something else.

  2. Edwina Christiansen says

    The turbine creates pressure vacuums that screw with the bat’s echo location mechanism. They are also susceptible to the air pressure changes near the turbines which causes their lungs to explode. Also the bat found dead was an Indiana bat which are on the endangered species list and protected by Congress, more so than Congress wants to have energy projects expedited.

  3. Marie Hjort says

    The batts navigate well around the wings of windmills only to come to the backside where airpressure explodes their lungs. Their lungs fills with blood and they drown.
    Regards from Denmark

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