Individual study: Reducing bat fatalities at wind facilities while improving the economic efficiency of operational mitigation
Martin C.M., Arnett E.B., Stevens R.D. & Wallace M. (2017) Reducing bat fatalities at wind facilities while improving the economic efficiency of operational mitigation. Journal of Mammalogy, 98, 378-385
This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.
Increase the wind speed at which turbines become operational (‘cut-in speed’) to reduce bat fatalities
A randomized, replicated, controlled study in 2012–2013 at a wind farm in Vermont USA (Martin et al. 2017) found that increasing the wind speed at which turbines become operational (‘cut-in speed’) at temperatures above 9.5°C resulted in fewer bat fatalities than at turbines with conventional cut-in speeds. The total number of bat fatalities was 62% lower at wind turbines with increased cut-in speeds (average 0.5 bats/turbine) than at fully operational turbines (1.4 bats/turbine). At treatment turbines, cut-in wind speeds were increased to 6 m/s when temperatures were >9.5°C. Fully operational control turbines had a cut-in wind speed of 4 m/s. In each year, eight of 16 turbines were randomly assigned the treatment for 60 nights. Daily fatality searches were carried out in June–September 2012 and 2013. Rectangular study plots around each turbine were searched using transects spaced 6 m apart. If applied to all turbines, it was estimated that the operational changes would result in annual energy losses of 1%.
(Summarised by Anna Berthinussen)