A potential wind turbine installation on the island of Crete may be poised to drive an endangered raptor population to extinction.
Recent studies have found the favored “renewable” energies – wind and solar – are not effective, even counteractive, when it comes to reducing emissions from fossil fuels.
Solar PV installation, for example, results in a net loss of energy, meaning that the net effect of solar energy use is ultimately more dependence on fossil fuels.
Image Source: Ferroni and Hopkirk, 2016
Due especially to its intermittent energy generation, the installation of wind turbines also necessitates eventual growth in fossil fuel energies to back them up (due especially to the frequent occasions when the wind is not blowing).
Image Source: Marques et al., 2018
Even worse, the installation of wind turbines have been well documented to destroy wildlife habitats (Marques et al., 2019, Millon et al., 2018, Lange et al., 2018, Barré et al., 2018). Frequent soaring species collisions may ultimately lead to widespread extinctions (Naylor, 2018 , Watson et al., 2018, Vasilakis et al., 2017 ) in the coming decades.
Roughly 25% of North American bats are now classified at risk for extinction (Hammerson et al, 2017) in large part due to the explosion of wind turbines across the landscape.
If the expansion of wind turbines continues at its current pace, the hoary bat population is projected to be reduced by 90% (Frick et al., 2017) within the next 50 years.
In a new paper (Xirouchakis et al., 2019), scientists detail the austere short-term mortality risks wind turbines pose upon an endangered griffon vulture on the island of Crete.
Considering the unreliability and counteractive effectiveness of wind turbine use in mitigating fossil fuel dependency, one needs to ask why we are willing to risk the extirpation of rare raptor species for the purpose of expanding “renewable” energies that increasingly seem to do more harm than good.