Photo Essay: “Bright Green Lies” — Wind Energy Kills Birds, Bats, and the Future

Have you ever been to a so-called “green” energy generation facility? Recently several members of Deep Green Resistance visited the Spring Valley Wind Project, a set of 66 turbines, each nearly 400 feet tall and rated to produce 2.3 MW of power.

This set of wind turbines in Spring Valley, NV has destroyed the land around their bases, brought in aggressive invasive species such as cheatgrass (the BLM’s idea of “restoration”), and we even found a dead hawk or owl at the base of the very first turbine we visited.

The first fucking turbine.

According to Basin and Range Watch, many more birds have been killed at the site, including Kestrels, Cliff swallows, Horned Larks, Blue-gray gnatcatchers, MacGillivray’s warblers, Rough-legged hawks, and Golden Eagles. At least hundreds of bats have been killed as well, as this site is located only a few miles from a roosting site for the Brazilian free-tailed bat of continental significance.

Materials for these turbines were first strip mined, then assembled in Utah and China, then shipped around the world to Spring Valley. When these turbines stop working, they will be demolished. According to representatives of Pattern Energy, none of the materials will even be recycled (not that recycling is a solution), and only the first five feet of the 30-foot deep concrete foundations will be removed.

There’s nothing green about wind energy. It’s the same corporate industrial energy free-for-all with similar horrific consequences for the natural world.

Equipment at the base of the turbine. We believe this may house lubrication oil. Each turbine requires several hundred gallons. Exxon Mobil, the oil company, has a business division dedicated to the wind power industry.

Note the cars for scale. These turbines are massive. The tilted turbine is due to using a wide angle lens.

More cheatgrass around the turbines.

Bright Green Lies: turning natural habitat into an industrial energy generation zone.

BLM’s idea of “restoration”: highly invasive cheatgrass.

Close up of the dead bird. Most birds and bats killed by the turbines are likely removed by scavengers before they can be counted.

The humming of electrical equipment and pumps is loud near the turbines.

Long shadow cast by the turbine in an otherwise wild valley.

A dead predatory bird, unidentified species (likely either a hawk or an owl) at the base of the first turbine. The head was missing.

One of the 2.3 MW Siemens wind turbines above Spring Valley.

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