Articles filed under Impact on Wildlife from Wyoming

New studies show pronghorn avoid wind turbines

Wind turbines do displace pronghorn, which in return lose valuable food especially in winter months. ...“We know there is a negative effect, and we would fully expect that to translate that animals don’t eat as much, they don’t put on as much fat, they don’t survive the winter as well and have as many young, all of those are logical,” Kauffman said. 
24 Jan 2021

Migration routes are an energy, environmental balancing act

Gov. Mark Gordon released a draft executive order to bolster migration corridor protections. The draft, published on Dec. 23, attempted to thread the needle between the need to preserve precious wildlife and the need to support Wyoming’s lucrative energy sector. Of the eight ungulate species, or hoofed mammals, making up the one million or so migrating mammals across Wyoming, the executive order places special emphasis on two: mule deer and pronghorn. Since its release, the draft has been lauded by several groups as a winning example of science-based wildlife management policy. Still, others fear it could add one more set of hurdles for energy developers to leap through.
19 Jan 2020

Antelope hindered by solar farm

According to a letter submitted to the Sweetwater County Land Use Office regarding the solar project’s proposal April 27, 2018, the WGFD was concerned with how the facility’s perimeter fence would cause antelope and big game to funnel onto Wyo. Highway 372. The WGFD feared this would cause increased collisions between vehicles and wildlife. The letter also raises concerns about the solar facility’s location.
14 Dec 2019

Migration corridor debate takes center stage as governor, Legislature wrestle over policy

Debate over the fate of Wyoming’s bustling migration corridors dominated a packed natural resource committee meeting Wednesday in Casper. State lawmakers and key stakeholders wrestled over how to maintain both a robust energy industry and healthy environment for the state’s iconic migratory game. Ultimately, committee members voted to sponsor a new bill that could overhaul how the state regulates migration corridors and expand the corridor designation process beyond the purview of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
24 Oct 2019

Wind energy companies seek balance between production, protection

Hutchins believes seasonal shutdowns or retrofitting power lines and towers are useful tools for reducing bird deaths once wind farms are up and running. The best strategy, though, is siting the turbines properly in the first place. “Unfortunately, these things are going up anywhere, including in important bird areas, and we think that’s highly problematic,” Hutchins said.
26 Jul 2014

Research helps move discussion of energy impacts on wildlife, scientist says

Even energy billed as clean can have impacts on wildlife. The U.S. Department of Justice fined Duke Energy $1 million for killing 14 golden eagles and about 150 other protected species between 2009 and 2013. The deaths all occurred on Duke Energy’s Converse County wind farms, and was the first time the Obama administration legally addressed a wind company for bird fatalities. Read more about the wind farm and eagles here.
26 Jul 2014

Wind turbine pressure change kills bats, research may help prevent future deaths

Miles away, wind turbines sat motionless in the windless night. Their spinning blades can be deadly to bats, bursting capillaries in their lungs before the blades hit their tiny bodies. Three Wyoming bats are particularly susceptible when they migrate from summer to winter ranges. Keinath and Abernethy were looking for bats to tell them which, if any, species called the area home.
30 Oct 2012

Of Windmills and Wildlife

In this surreal debate, perhaps it's worth remembering that though it has been four centuries since Cervantes' character Sancho pointed out to Don Quixote, "Look, your worship ... what we see there are not giants but windmills, and what seem to be their arms are the vanes that turned by the wind make the millstone go," we still must look at things honestly for what they are, not just for what our fantasies want them to be.
14 Jul 2010

Wyoming G&F approves wildlife guidelines for wind power

Wyoming will monitor the wind energy industry's effects on wildlife through guidelines unanimously approved by the Game and Fish Commission on Friday. The commission resisted calls from some landowners and some industry representatives who wanted to delay approval of the 65-page document because of technical issues and concerns about private property rights.
24 Apr 2010

Wyoming wind project offers grouse conservation plan

The developer of a proposed southern Wyoming wind farm is seeking federal approval of a conservation deal that could help the project move forward in an area that's also home to sage grouse. The Power Company of Wyoming wants to build a 1,000-turbine wind farm on part of a 486-square-mile cattle ranch near Rawlins. Denver-based Anschutz Corp. owns the Power Company and the ranch, which is a mixture of private and federal lands.
18 Apr 2010

Agency acts properly on wind farm guidelines

State lawmakers have determined that major industrial developments, including wind farms, warrant government scrutiny because of potential impacts beyond the land where they're located, be it private, state or federal. That's a sound policy. And because Wyoming's abundant wildlife is treasured by the state's people, it's appropriate that our wildlife management agency have a say in projects that could harm that valuable resource.
9 Apr 2010

Wyoming mulls wildlife guidelines for wind developers

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department wants to discourage the construction of wind turbines close to water, forests and other wildlife habitat, but the agency's latest draft recommendations offer developers a bit more flexibility depending on the specifics of a site. The department recently released a new draft of wildlife protection recommendations for wind developers.
4 Apr 2010

'Warranted but precluded'; Decision offers encouragement, concerns for industry, conservationists

Wildlife conservationists and energy developers alike found some encouragement in Friday's announcement that the sage grouse won't be listed as a threatened or endangered species. Many agreed that such a listing would have had a chilling effect on the agriculture and minerals industries, which are the foundation of Wyoming's economy.
6 Mar 2010
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