Warning: This post will not be an easy article for the lovers of birds and nature.
Not only do wind turbine make noise, disturb the surrounding natural environment, and create industrial blight in idyllic landscapes, but they also kill wildlife – especially protected birds.
The latest example is presented by the website of the anti-wind turbine group Gegenwind-Vogelsberg, in English “Against-Wind Vogelsberg”.
Vogelsberg is located in Central Germany and has been a natural reserve since 1956, thus making it one of Germany’s oldest. But that hasn’t stopped Big Wind from deforesting in the area to make way for industrial access roads and many dozens of 200-meter-tall wind turbines. Now this natural park “is the region in Hessen with the highest wind turbine density“.
According to the Gegenwind-Vogelsberg website:
Here there are over 220 turbines – another 40 are now in the permitting and planning process – 75% of all Central Hesse and 25% of all wind turbines in Hesse.
Through the unreasonable, money-greedy mayor and investors, and because of the zeal by energy suppliers to be energy-independent, the Vogelsberg and its surrounding area have mutated step-by-step from a natural park to an industrial park.”
Yesterday at their site, GegenWind-Vogelsberg presents one of the gruesome consequences of the wind turbines: a killed crane. GegenWind-Vogelsberg reports:
Because the wind lobby likes to insist that chopped birds are a fairy tale, we feel compelled to publish these gruesome photos and ask for your understanding.
Also especially because the wind park operator made no effort whatsoever to temporarily stop the turbines even though hundreds of other cranes flew by mistake through the wind park after the accident.”
The Gegenwind-Voegelsberg site provides photos of the “accident”:
Source of photos: here. It’s impossible to say just how many birds are killed each year because fallen birds quickly become the prey of predators on the ground, wildlife experts say.
One thing is clear, the turbines are deadly machines to birds – and that in a place once designated a “natural refuge” area.
You can contact Gegenwind-Vogelsberg: email@example.com. E-mails in English and support from international friends will of course be very welcome.
23 responses to “German Natural Park Mutates To An Industrial Park…With Deadly Consequences To Wildlife”
Thank you for highlighting this, Pierre.
A back of the envelope calulation demonstrates that wind turbines require two orders of magnitude more land area than nuclear plants for the same power capacity.
Wind (typical): 4 MW / km²
Nuclear (typical): 400 MW / km²
Wind turbines are multiple masts and blade assemblies, whereas nuclear power plants are just buildings So there is FAR more stationary structure for birds to hit (even if the blades don’t turn). If you consider the high speed blades which chop up birds & bats (not to mention what this does to the blade!) and you can see that the enterprise is already on a weak foundation. Then there’s the strain on the gearboxes (can a large wind turbine last 20y before overhaul?), the problem of icing, overspeed, …
Add the fact that wind power requires stored energy or power backup to cover the wind still (typical capacity factor of 0.25) and the calculation just gets worse.
Kurt in Switzerland
True – but a little misleading. You should also count an area of mining and an area of spent fuel disposal.
Clearly, offshore wind farms are hugely preferable. You don’t get any nosy ornithologists collecting bird carcasses at the foot of a tower.
This post is even more misleading: Some nuclear plant use less than 1km² for 1GW, running 90% of time. Wind take 4MW INSTALLED power with a true usage time of circa 15%, ie 0.0006GW /km² versus 0.9GW nuclear; 1500 times more wind-km² are needed.
In this perspective, nuclear mines and ground storage are peanuts in comparison with…
And we have not yet taken into account the necessary wind-energy storage, so far water dams….
Dear curiously naive George. Why do you think the seals have changed their behaviour and now hang around the off shore wind farms? Its to eat the carcasses of the slaughtered birds of course. But you don’t care if the birds are slaughtered do you! Just as long as you win the discussion. Skeptics, of human-caused global warming really do care about, and try to protect the flora and fauna of our environment from the politically driven scam of RENEWABLES. Wind and solar farms are environmentally damaging and economically unfeasible. Wake up!
Wind turbines output is more like 2 MW/sq. km because of (typical) overcrowding and wind shadow. At best 2.6.
Experience in the UK is that turbines need major overhaul around 9 years and output reduces to uneconomic levels around 17-19 years, (Costs of maintenance exceed value of electricity generated) so sell them off to some government agency or gullible superannuation trustees (e.g. BBC).
In the USA a study of a wind farm in the desert found a small drop in the number of small animals near the turbines, but a big reduction in species. The ‘winners’ were rats and other scavengers (not including operators).
The wind ‘farmers’ ALWAYS over estimate the output, e.g. in Albany in West Australia they claim (on a bronze plaque!) that the capacity factor will be 40-41%. In case you haven’t been there, it’s an ideal location on a peninsular at 90 degrees to prevailing winds from the Southern Ocean, gently sloping mound (so elevated height of blades into stronger winds) and rounded hills at each end funnelling wind over ‘farm’. Actual CF 31-33%. Unknown number of birds killed.
So, in order to save the Earth they had to destroy its nature. Future generations will shake their heads in disbelief. That´s pure madness. Plain and simple.
It’s only illogical if you lived under the illusion that the Greens were about nature protection.
It is so upsetting to look at these photographs. But, what is even more infuriating is knowing that it could have been avoided. A pox on the house of the Greenies.
A bowl of ebola in their pantry!
I feel quite sorry for the real greenies because their patch has been stolen from them. Many of these people are dedicated and caring people with a burden for the protection of wildlife and the environment but they seem to have swallowed the pill that makes them say CO2 is a pollutant, the world will become toast, etc.
Clearly, if the world fries, there is no point is trying to protect the wildlife.
Even though they lose there funding for bird protection (or whatever), they still don’t see the problem. When they are confronted about it, they look stunned and amazed.
I always wondered how cranes and geese make it through the turbine fields. From the Autobahn A39 near Salzgitter Lichtenberg I can sometimes see them flying right toward the turbine field there; slightly below the height of the nacelles I would say, optimal chances to get shredded.
I’m certain that the workers of the wind turbine industry are tasked with letting the bodies disappear. You wouldn’t want your wonderful taxpayer milking scheme ruined.
Wow! Gabriel schools the Greens on energy and economics. http://www.welt.de/wirtschaft/energie/article134226392/Gabriel-geisselt-Oekopopulismus-von-Greenpeace.html
This is a powerful interview, and I hope you can use, circulate and post it widely to educate others about what is going on in rural areas around the world where industrial wind turbines have been installed. This interview is of international relevance to a global problem, which is being ignored and denied by ALL governments who are more concerned about votes and money than people’s health and wellbeing. http://www.2gb.com/audioplayer/73696#.VGFkyYcWnOc
Indeed it is. The brakes are on Germany’s Energiewende. Will post on this tomorrow.
I have yet to see a halt to the ongoing southwards march of the windmills; e.g. in Caliphate Al Kraft a.k.a. Northrhine Westphalia.
Just like in Hesse or Rhineland Palatinate, they flatten forested nature reserve hilltops to install monuments to their Red-Green Greatness. And to finally obliterate those useless bats. Who needs them.
We would be knee deep in mosquitoes without bats.
No problem at all. We would have so much wind power electricity that we could run bug zappers everywhere.
Those figures are nothing compared to birds that fly into windows. In the U.S. alone.
The figures reported for bird strikes against windows are astonishing. It is often said that between 100 million and a billion birds die in the US each year after striking windows.
Don’t forget the number of Golden Eagles killed by domestic cats.
Well, the BBC would say that, wouldn’t they?
Seriously, the buildings represent a stationary object, whereas the turbines are an ADDITIONAL and unnecessary hazard.
Buildings, mostly, serve a useful purpose.
Bah. The bird populations will adapt or shift to areas with lesser densities of avian shredders. Mother Nature is a very effective mother, if totally ruthless and uncaring. It’s just that the Greens, who put nature before humans on principle & hate industrial civilization with a passion, should throw their principles to the wind for an illusory goal to fight an imaginary danger (a telltale sign that this is really about religious fanaticism, not “science”) and end up doing just what they deplored most as “capitalist evils”. Surely the irony of that ought to hurt them enough to wake up. But then the other hallmark of fanatics & hardened ideologues is that no amount of cognitive dissonance ever reaches this tipping point.