BAT DETERRENT SYSTEM REDUCES BAT FATALITIES AT TEXAS WIND FARM
NRG Systems, Inc. has stated that a trial of its ultrasonic acoustic Bat Deterrent System reduced overall bat fatalities at the Los Vientos Wind Energy Facility in Starr County, Texas, by 54 per cent. The results of the test suggest that NRG Systems’ technology is an effective tool for reducing mortality of certain species of bats caused by wind turbines. The Bat Deterrent System is based on ‘jamming’ the echolocation capabilities of bats while causing no harm to wildlife encountering the treated airspace.
The test was led by researchers from Texas State University in partnership with Bat Conservation International (BCI), and involved installing NRG’s Bat Deterrent Systems on 16 of the facility’s 255 turbines. Brogan Morton, Senior Product Manager at NRG Systems, said, “It is no secret that wind turbines cause mortality to bats. This has become an increasingly critical issue as bat populations across North America continue to decline. NRG set out to develop a technology that would allow wind developers and operators to protect bats while creating more energy more of the time. We are incredibly pleased to say that we are well on our way to making this a reality.” While 2018 marks three years of testing for NRG’s Bat Deterrent System, research around using ultrasonic acoustic deterrents to reduce bat fatalities at wind turbines has been underway for over a decade. This was led by The Bats and Wind Energy Cooperative (BWEC), an organization that BCI helped launch and continues to coordinate.