Environmental Community Split Over Wind Farm

Austin, Texas [American-Statesman] When the state’s General Land Office signed a deal last fall to develop 50 wind turbines off the coast of Galveston, it seemed like the kind of green energy project all environmentalists would applaud. The $220 million wind farm, small as it will be, could power 40,000 homes, relying on the fuel in the air rather than on oil or coal. But Galveston sits beneath a critical migratory bird path that links North America to wintering areas in Central and South America, and the prospect of the turbines, each rising hundreds of feet from the sea, has divided the environmental community. On the one hand are activists alarmed by global climate change who want to see renewable energy sources come online as quickly as possible. On the other are those who say flocks of migratory birds could be at risk, and they are pressing to slow the construction of the turbines to thoroughly study their effect on birds. …

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