UN looks to protect birds from green energy threats

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Birds have long been a concern in relation to wind turbines but the expansion of green energy has increased the urgency

The global boom in renewable energy is posing new threats to birds say experts.

At the UN climate conference in Bonn, researchers said wind turbines and power lines were a particular problem for migratory soaring birds.

Shutting down wind farms on demand is one of the methods being tested to protect these birds from collisions.

Other ideas being tried include placing highly visible deflectors every 20m on power lines.

The Rift Valley and Red Sea flyways in Egypt are among the world’s busiest corridors with huge numbers of migrating birds travelling between Europe and Africa twice a year.

Around 1.2 million birds of prey, 500,000 white storks and 66,000 white pelican migrate each year along this particular flyway. Some will cover 10,000km on their journey.

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Engineers in France attaching reflectors to high powered electricity lines to warn off birds of prey

Unfortunately this area is also where Egypt is developing new, large scale wind farms. At one wind park, El Zayt, over 290,000 migratory birds flew through it in 2014.

Concerned about the impact the twirling blades may have on the species flying over, the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency in collaboration with the wind farm developers and bird experts set out to test a new shut down on demand protection system.

In Spring 2016 they set up two radar units, with field ornithologists on site located…

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