RSPB goes ahead with wind turbines despite birds dying
NewsMonday 01 July 2013
The RSPB has gone ahead with plans for a wind turbine at its headquaters despite the fact that one of the UK’s rarest birds was killed by one last week.
A white-throated needletrail, perhaps the world’s fastest flying bird was rumoured to be around the Outer Hebrides where up to 200 people had gathered to get just a tiny glimpse of it. These birds had been spotted in the UK just 8 times since 1846.
Within hours of arriving on the Isle of Harris, the bird was killed by the blade of an electric wind turbine.
Around this time, the bird should have been in Siberia but was thousands of miles off course. It was described to fans as the “bird of the century”. The last sighting of such a bird was in 1991.
James Hanlon stated that “I was watching it through my binoculars from about 200 metres away.
“One minute it was flying in spectacular fashion. I followed it and then watched as it flew into one of the blades of the wind turbine and vanished.
“My heart jumped into my mouth. We dashed over to see if it had been killed and sadly found its body on the ground. It was heartbreaking.”
Now the focus turns to the death of the bird and what could have been done to prevent it. This sparked a fierce debate about the RSPB’s support for the wind farm industry. Some say that the organisation has ignored fears that tens of millions are killed by the growing number of wind farms across the world.
It is said that one wind turbine kills between 110 and 330 birds every year
Out of an estimated 10,000 wind turbines, only 6 developments have been objection of the RSPB.
On the other said of the debate is that projects like wind turbines are vital to help with the problem of climate change. Climate change will of course have huge significance on the survival of certain species. RSPB spokesperson Grahame Madge said that;
“Climate change is the biggest threat facing wildlife and, indeed, mankind,”
“We believe that renewable energy is an essential tool in the fight against climate change, which poses the single biggest threat to the long-term survival of birds and wildlife. So we are doing everything we can to bring down greenhouse gas emissions to help stop the planet warming up. Of course, any turbine is a collision risk.”
“We are confident that it will generate significant amounts of renewable energy and want to proceed with the proposal.”
Angela Kelly who is the chairman of Country Guardian anti-wind-farm group said “It does not surprise me to hear that the RSPB still intends to go ahead with its wind turbine.
“I gave up my RSPB membership in the early Nineties after it became clear that they were determined to support the wind industry in spite of well publicised proof that birds had been killed by wind turbines in Spain and the US.”