Wind environment program
In everything we do, we recognise the need to look at the big picture. Our Wind Environment Program considers all the initial and ongoing environmental impacts our wind farms may have.
This program aims to sustainably manage wind farms, the land they occupy, and to comply with all regulations associated with wind farms. Our areas of focus are:
- Managing land for the future – preventing erosion and the protection of any native vegetation;
- Understanding if the wind farm effects birds and bats through detailed, rigorous scientific studies;
- Investigating if there is an impact on any flora or fauna. If there is we will mitigate this impact, or if this is not possible, implement an offset program which aims to have a net positive effect on the species.
On an ongoing basis we continually monitor the wind farms for compliance purposes and to ensure we can react quickly in the case of an incident. The WEP team works with other areas of Hydro Tasmania, such as energy generation and trading to make sure all environmental considerations are considered day-to-day.
Annual Environmental Performance Reports
Eagle offset package
An offset package is our last resort. If any flora or fauna is impacted by a wind farm, we first try to remove this impact. However, this is not achievable in all cases – so in place we offset the impacts with a range activities so that overall there is a positive effect on the species. The Wedge-tailed eagle and white-bellied sea-eagle offset package covers the impact to these eagles at Bluff Point & Studland Bay Wind Farms >
The offset package supports the actions in the Tasmanian Wedge-tailed eagle and White-bellied sea-eagle Nesting Habitat Management Plan. The actions we are undertaking were designed to align with the Wedge-tailed eagle recovery plan (1998-2003) and the current Threatened Tasmanian Eagles Recovery Plan 2006-2010 (Threatened Species Section 2006).
The main aim is to protect the habitat of eight breeding pairs of Wedge-tailed eagles and five breeding pairs of white-bellied sea eagles. We do this by:
- Protecting habitat for 13 pairs of eagles through the establishment of covenants or long term management agreements;
- Funding a research project which evaluates the effectiveness of management prescriptions being conducted by Tasmania’s Forest Practices Authority;
- Aerial searches to find new eagle nests; and
- Eagle conservation education and promotion activities to raise awareness and knowledge of Tasmanian eagle species and decline. When this program was managed by Roaring 40s an Eagle Education kit called Soaring was produced. Please contact us to request a copy.
Publications which may be of interest can be found below.
CL Hull and SC Muir. 2010. Search areas for monitoring bird and bat carcasses at wind farms using a Monte-Carlo model. Australasian Journal of Environmental Management 17:77-87.
VivBabbler (Birds Australia – Victoria), Issue 95, January 2010 pgs. 8,9.
CL Hull and L Cawthen 2013. Bat fatalities at two wind farms in Tasmania, Australia: bat characteristics, and spatial and temporal patterns. New Zealand Journal of Zoology 40:1, 5-15
CL Hull, EM Stark, S. Peruzzo, CC Sims. 2013. Avian collisions at two wind farms in Tasmania, Australia: taxonomic and ecological characteristics of colliders versus non-colliders. New Zealand Journal of Zoology 40:1, 47-62.
CL Hull and SC Muir. 2013. Behavior and turbine avoidance rates of eagles at two wind farms in Tasmania, Australia. Wildlife Society Bulletin 37(1): 49-58.