Offshore Wind Development Threatens Endangered Roseate Tern
- Apr 17, 2017 2:17 am GMT
Anticipating increased mortality to the Endangered Roseate Tern from planned offshore wind development on the
The birds' range and behavior make them especially vulnerable to harm from offshore wind energy facilities. "The federally Endangered Roseate Tern migrates and forages far off the coast during breeding season, putting it at risk from collisions with the rapidly spinning turbine blades," said Dr.
The Roseate Tern migrates the length of the Eastern Seaboard, which means it could be impacted by large-scale industrial offshore wind development that has been proposed by the
"Environmental Impact Statements and consultation with the
As with any wind energy development, siting of these projects is critical. "Hundreds of thousands of birds and bats are being lost annually to onshore wind facilities, and offshore wind, if poorly placed, has the potential to be just as destructive," Hutchins said. "At the very least, seasonal shutdowns should be required mitigation, since the terns' distribution and behavior is predictable."
Roseate Terns already face a number of serious threats to their survival. According to the 1987 decision to list the species under the Endangered Species Act, "Nesting habitat for the northeastern
"Given the terns' very small population and the limited amount of suitable habitat available, any new sources of mortality are of great concern," said Hutchins. "The
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