This coalition of scientists from industry, government, nongovernmental organizations and universities met recently in Racine, Wisc., to address unanswered questions about how continued wind energy development will affect migrating birds and bats. The meeting was hosted by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the American Bird Conservancy and the Johnson Foundation at Wingspread.
”Billions of birds migrate annually, taking advantage of the same wind currents that are most beneficial for producing wind energy,” said Andrew Farnsworth, a postdoctoral research associate at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology who serves on the steering committee of the coalition. “We know that in some locations a small percentage of wind turbines may cause the majority of bird and bat deaths. As wind power develops further, we need to know more about how placement, design and operation impact birds and bats as well as how habitat and weather conditions affect potential hazards,” he said.
The scientists addressed some of the critical information that could be collected using such cutting-edge tools as weather surveillance radar, thermal imaging and microphones directed skyward to map migrations by day and night. New research will build upon monitoring and research studies of birds and bats before and after construction of existing wind energy facilities as well as work done by other researchers.
”Conducting this research will help the wind industry make informed, science-based decisions about where future wind energy projects can be built and how they can be operated to minimize the impact on migrating wildlife, while still providing much-needed alternative energy,” said John Fitzpatrick, director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, who also attended the meeting with Chris Clark, director of the lab’s Bioacoustics Research Program; Kenneth Rosenberg, director of the lab’s Conservation Science Program; and Martin Piorkowski, a biologist and project coordinator for the lab. “It will also help flesh out specific guidelines for wind farm construction being developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.”
The coalition, which appointed working groups to move this new research agenda forward, identified such top research priorities as:
• Studying bird and bat behaviors, and more accurately estimating mortality at existing wind turbines;
• Using current and newly obtained information on bird and bat population numbers and distribution to focus research on critically important migratory routes and timing;* Documenting how interactions of birds and bats with turbines are
• Conducting research on best practices for mitigating the impacts of wind energy development on birds and bats.
”Imagine if a similar effort had taken place at the turn of the 20th century with the auto industry and air quality,” added Kraig Butrum, president and CEO of the American Wind Wildlife Institute, an umbrella organization for the wind energy industry and environmental groups. “We’d probably be in a completely different place when it comes to global climate change and energy dependence, because we considered environmental impact from the start.”
Blaine Friedlander | Newswise Science News
Invasive Insects Cost the World Billions Per Year
04.10.2016 | University of Adelaide
Malaysia's unique freshwater mussels in danger
27.09.2016 | The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...
'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.
Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
24.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering
24.10.2016 | Life Sciences
24.10.2016 | Life Sciences