Wind Turbines licence approved on Cork/Kerry border despite three dead Sea Eagles on nearby windfarms

Published by Dave Brooks on

August 2nd, 2016

Wind Turbines were responsible for the deaths of at least three rare White-Tailed Sea Eagles in the Cork-Kerry area, the National parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has revealed in a report to An Bord Pleanála.

The report was delivered as part of an objection to a planned Wind Farm on the Cork/Kerry border, which, it claims, could have an adverse impact on the White-Tailed Sea Eagle re-introduction programme based in the Killarney National Park.

More than €1.5 million has been invested in the project since 100 chicks of the once native Eagles were brought from Norway and re-introduced in Ireland between 2007 and 2011. At least three deaths due to turbine collision occurred at adjacent wind farms between 2011 and 2012, and the NPWS noted this species’ particular vulnerability to turbine collisions, citing a case in Norway in which 39 eagles died at one large wind farm between 2005 and 2010.

However, last week An Bord Pleanála granted permission for the Grousemount wind farm, which will comprise 38 turbines extending from 17km northeast of  Kenmare to 14km along the Cork border to the southwest of Ballyvourney.

The Electricity Supply Board (ESB) accepted that the eagles were sensitive to the wind farms, but ignored the concerns, reporting that they were rarely found in the proposed area, and that the majority of the 30 confirmed sea eagle deaths since the beginning of the project were as a result of poisoning.

The project has been granted permission for 25 years, and development is to start within 10 years.

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Dave Brooks

Dave works as Communication Assistant with the Environmental Pillar. His background is in psychology and he has a masters in Environmental Psychology from the University of Surrey.