Migrating birds, bats, and eagles are part of the wildlife that depend on this narrow strip of land along Big Bay de Noc. Scott Hicks, field supervisor for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service recommends:
Based on the data currently available, we must once again recommend that you not construct a commercial wind energy development on the Garden Peninsula, because of the high potential for avian mortalities and violations of federal wildlife laws.
Since 2007, our office has expressed significant concerns with this project. Our concerns are based on several factors, including the proximity of the project to a Great Lakes shoreline and Big Bay de Noc, the proximity of the project to adjacent wetland habitats, and the fact that this peninsula will tend to funnel avian migrants and serve as a point of departure or arrival for birds crossing Lake Michigan.
Here on the Peninsula, we have all noticed the extreme reduction in the bat population and the dramatic increase in mosquitoes. Some residents have attributed the reduced bat population to white-nose fungus.
But scientists who spoke to the Detroit Free Press as recently as April 11 of this year report that no die-offs due the fungus have occurred yet (although they are expected next year, worsening the problem).
So, what's killing the bats? Discovery News reports:
Researchers have found the cause behind mysterious bat deaths near wind turbines, in which many bat carcasses appeared uninjured. The explanation to this puzzle is that the bats' lungs effectively blow up from the rapid pressure drop that occurs as air flows over the turbine blades."
Our children's future depends on our care of our small planet. Are we doing our part when we trade 20 years of expensive, unreliable energy for contributing to extinction of migratory birds, Eagles and local bats?
Please encourage the Delta Country Planning Commission and Township Trustees to do their part in protecting our children's future by enacting ordinances for wind turbines that follow scientific environmental recommendations - and federal law.