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Paint it black. This is obviously the title of a Rolling Stones hit, but also the title of a study published by Norwegian researchers on bird mortality following collisions with wind turbines. Their conclusion : partially painting the blades black would kill fewer birds.
A study published recently in the journal Ecology and Evolution provides clear evidence : the development of wind power has also led to a considerable increase in bird mortality. They cannot easily see the white blades of wind turbines., especially when they are in motion. The risk of collision is higher as the wind farm grows exponentially, the climate change crisis having favored innovation and the development of renewable energy sources on a global scale.
►►► To read also : Thanks to wind power, renewable energy production took off last year in Belgium
Norwegian researchers at the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research reportedly found solution to lower bird death rate : partially repaint one of the blades in black. The study was carried out in a wind farm located northwest of the island of Smøla, an archipelago located off the coast, in central Norway. During the period 2006-2016, 20, then 48 turbines were involved in the study, who recorded the number of bird carcasses found at the foot of the masts. In August 2013, one of the three rotor blades was painted black on four of the turbines, to promote visual contrast when in motion. And the result of the study is clear : the annual death rate has decreased by 71,9% on average in turbines with painted blades, compared to neighboring turbines. Raptors have benefited the most from this innovation, no more white-tailed eagle deaths, also called great sea eagle, having for example been noted.
This study could provide a solution to a paradoxical problem : the constant increase in the number of wind farms seems to be harming wildlife. The conclusions of the study therefore recommend reproducing this experience on a larger number of wind turbines and on new sites in order to generalize this type of painting.. Pour Ecology and Evolution, it is essential to find solutions like this, reconciling the protection of birds and the development of a growing wind energy sector.
New research indicates that painting wind turbine rotor blades black may drastically reduce #raptor mortality at wind farms! #ornithology # renewables @ BIOEAF @ 4Vultures @grauwekiek @ElspethSage @BaranesJudy @_BTO @vogelnieuws @BirdLife_News @NABU_Biodiv https://t.co/fIYYff1ZiR
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World news – THAT – Paint wind turbines black to kill fewer birds ?