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For wind power, U.S. extends permit for eagle deaths

By The Associated Press

This article was published December 6, 2013 at 11:39 a.m.

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration said Friday it will allow some companies to kill or injure bald and golden eagles for up to 30 years without penalty, an effort to spur development and investment in green energy while balancing its environmental consequences.

The change, requested by the wind energy industry, will provide legal protection for the lifespan of wind farms and other projects for which companies obtain a permit and make efforts to avoid killing the birds.

An investigation by The Associated Press earlier this year documented the illegal killing of eagles around wind farms, the Obama administration’s reluctance to prosecute such cases and its willingness to help keep the scope of the eagle deaths secret. The White House has championed wind power, a pollution-free energy intended to ease global warming, as a cornerstone of President Barack Obama’s energy plan.

Read more in Saturday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

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Displaying 1 - 5 of 5 total comments

mhck52 says... December 6, 2013 at 12:02 p.m.

Well, he just lost the PETA vote.

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LETSBEREALISTIC says... December 6, 2013 at 12:45 p.m.

Obama will sacrifice anything, individual freedoms, laws, protected species, etc., to promote his communist agenda. Vote all Democrats out of office in 2014.

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RoyDaMercer says... December 6, 2013 at 2:04 p.m.

Love your Walter avatar mhck52

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dwardawea says... December 6, 2013 at 2:11 p.m.

It is important to understand that the eagle "take" permit is not new and was not developed for nor is it specific to the wind industry, but rather is available to all sources of human-caused eagle mortality including oil and gas exploration and production, mining, military bases, airports, cell towers, utility lines, etc.

Congress actually sanctioned the issuance of permits decades ago when the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act became law, and then formalized the permit program through the 2009 Eagle Permit Rule. The program is designed for the express purpose of protecting eagle populations by providing much-needed conservation benefits in exchange for very limited take authorization. Ultimately, the decision made today by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service modifies a permit program which promotes eagle conservation.

The wind industry does more to address its impacts on eagles than any of the other, far greater sources of eagle fatalities known to wildlife experts, and we are constantly striving to reduce these impacts even further. In fact, the wind industry has taken the most proactive and leading role of any utility-scale energy source to minimize wildlife impacts in general, and specifically on eagles, through constantly improving siting and monitoring techniques.

Read the American Wind Energy Association’s entire reaction on our website awea dot org

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FreeSpiritMan says... December 6, 2013 at 4:01 p.m.

dwardawea ....... The three above your comment don't like to deal in facts, since that will embarrass them. Just like one conservative told me that all members of seal team 6 with the OBL raid had been murdered and the US had been paying Japan millions for years to not attack the US. Another said the Obama EPA had closed down the only lead smelting plant in the US. Because of this the price of ammo was going to skyrocket and the government was going to be able to control the supply of ammunition in the country. None of which is true except the closing of a filthy sulfa emitting plant.

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