Interest is booming in renewable energy sources, especially wind, solar, and biofuels. Such energy sources have huge benefits, including diversification of the nation’s energy portfolio, new jobs, and potential reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Yet, these energy sources sometimes have adverse effects on ecosystems and the wildlife that live in them, such as bats, birds, reptiles, and amphibians.
Our country’s know-how and ingenuity – combined with science – can help the United States grow a responsible, sustainable, and diversified energy future.
As our nation’s energy portfolio continues to grow, it is critical that energy development be guided by the best science available to ensure the coexistence of new power technologies and wildlife.
USGS is in a unique position to provide that science, bringing together many fields of research to help managers, policymakers, industry, and others make decisions that allow for energy development while responsibly lessening conflicts between renewable energy, ecosystems and wildlife. USGS scientists focus their research on three main goals: understanding risks, measuring impacts, and developing solutions.
Identify when and where wildlife occurs and how it shares space and interacts with renewable energy facilities.
Assess direct and indirect impacts and the level of impact species can sustain.
Minimize impacts through technological fixes, management, and mitigation.