“Almost all of the eagles killed at the NextEra subsidiary’s facilities were struck by the blades of wind turbines, prosecutors said.”
The Bald Eagle is not only America’s national symbol, they are also a protected species. Just a little over a year ago, they appeared to be making a comeback in 48 states.
Now a green energy company has pleaded guilty to the deaths of at least 150 of these beautiful birds, which were killed by wind farms.
The Associated Press reports, via the FOX Business Network:
Wind energy company kills 150 bald eagles in US, pleads guilty
A subsidiary of one of the largest U.S. providers of renewable energy pleaded guilty to criminal charges and was ordered to pay over $8 million in fines and restitution after at least 150 bald eagles were killed at its wind farms in eight states, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.
NextEra Energy subsidiary ESI Energy was also sentenced to five years probation after being charged with three counts of violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act during a court appearance in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The charges arose from the deaths of nine bald eagles at three wind farms in Wyoming and New Mexico.
In addition to those deaths, the company acknowledged the deaths of golden and bald eagles at 50 wind farms affiliated with ESI and NextEra since 2012, prosecutors said. Birds were killed in eight states: Wyoming, California, New Mexico, North Dakota, Colorado, Michigan, Arizona and Illinois…
Almost all of the eagles killed at the NextEra subsidiary’s facilities were struck by the blades of wind turbines, prosecutors said. Some turbines killed multiple eagles and because the carcasses are not always found, officials said the number killed was likely higher than the 150 birds cited in court documents.
Have you ever seen a wind turbine blade? They’re massive.
— EnergyBin (@EnergyBinCom) April 4, 2022
NPR of all places, has some interesting background on this case:
The company was warned prior to building the wind farms in New Mexico and Wyoming that they would kill birds, but it proceeded anyway and at times ignored advice from federal wildlife officials about how to minimize the deaths, according to court documents.
“For more than a decade, ESI has violated (wildlife) laws, taking eagles without obtaining or even seeking the necessary permit,” said Assistant Attorney General Todd Kim of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division in a statement.
ESI agreed under a plea agreement to spend up to $27 million during its five-year probationary period on measures to prevent future eagle deaths. That includes shutting down turbines at times when eagles are more likely to be present.
Despite those measures, wildlife officials anticipate that some eagles still could die. When that happens, the company will pay $29,623 per dead eagle, under the agreement.
So there’s a price per eagle?
A lot of people think you're not allowed to kill bald eagles, but you are. You just have to pay $53,333 for each one. And you have to make sure you kill them with a wind turbine. Because it's necessary to kill eagles to save them from climate change.https://t.co/AHAEkVZWMj
— Michael Shellenberger (@ShellenbergerMD) April 6, 2022
I seem to remember a certain politician being mocked by the media for warning this would happen.DONATE
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