RSPB Supports Plans to Build More Wind Turbines

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has called for a significant increase in the number of wind farms in the UK, after a new study found far more turbines could be built onshore without harming wildlife.

The RSPB has campaigned against wind farms in the past, because of the potential threat to birds, and helped prevent the biggest onshore wind farm in Europe being built on the Isle of Lewis because of the risk to sea eagles.

However, a new study, commissioned by the organisation and written by the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), has found wind farms pose no threat to birds and other animals if they are put up in the right area.

Experts at the charity said that, in addition to this, they would support the development of more wind farms because of the “truly terrifying” impact that global warming was having on birds. Ruth Davis, head of climate change policy at the charity, stressed that there was an urgent need to significantly increase sources of renewable energy to tackle greenhouse gas emissions. “Left unchecked, climate change threatens many species with extinction.” She said.

The study also revealed that the UK is trailing behind the rest Europe in building wind farms because of its bureacratic planning process, despite having abundant natural wind resources. Wind turbines generated just 2% of the UK’s energy in 2007, compared with 29% in Denmark, 20% in Spain and 15% in Germany.

Ruth Davis said: “We need a clear lead from government on where wind farms should be built and clear guidance for local councils on how to deal with applications. We must reduce the many needless delays that beset wind farm developments”.

“This report shows that if we get it right, the UK can produce huge amounts of clean energy without time-consuming conflicts and harm to our wildlife. Get it wrong and people may reject wind power. That would be disastrous.”

Read more about this story on the BBC News website and the Telegraph News Website

More information can be found on the RSPB wesite