Sunday, October 16, 2005

The Greens...

Thousands of aging turbines stud the brown rolling hills of the Altamont Pass on I-580 east of San Francisco Bay, a testament to one of the nation's oldest and best-known experiments in green energy.

Next month, hundreds of those blades will spin to a stop, in what appears to be a wind-energy first: Facing legal threats from environmentalists, the operators of the Altamont wind farm have agreed to shut down half of their windmills for two months starting Nov. 1; in January, they will be restarted and the other half will be shut down for two months.

Though the Altamont Pass is known for its strong winds, it also lies on an important bird-migration route, and its grass-covered hills provide food for several types of raptors. "It's the worst possible place to put a wind farm," said Jeff Miller, a wildlife advocate at the nonprofit Center for Biological Diversity. "It's responsible for an astronomical level of bird kills."
Windmills are also killing large numbers of bats in the Appalachian Mountains. A report (.pdf), issued in September by the Government Accountability Office on wind farms' impact on wildlife, said that 2,000 bats were killed during a seven-month study at a 44-turbine site in West Virginia.
...the Center for Biological Diversity successfully blocked a proposed wind farm in Southern California's Mojave Desert because it would have required building access roads in an area that is home to bighorn sheep.
He also said the FPL's plan to shut down half of the Altamont turbines is not enough. His group supports the plan in the California Energy Commission's 2004 report, which recommended that the Altamont wind farm shut down completely during the winter. A partial shutdown "is going to do something, but it doesn't go far enough," Miller said.

If Greens were responsible for making cars, you wouldn't have one, and you wouldn't be allowed to go anywhere anyway. There might be some bighorn sheep around, after all. You should probably just kill yourself now so that they can live.

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