If a Windmill Kills an Eagle, Does the Government Make a Sound?
If an eagle dies because of a power line or in any way related to oil production, huge fines are on the way, but the same can't be said when an eagle is killed by a windmill.
The Washington Post reports on the White House's willingness to put wind power above the law:
Killing these iconic birds is not just an irreplaceable loss for a vulnerable species. It’s also a federal crime, a charge that the Obama administration has used to prosecute oil companies when birds drown in their waste pits, and power companies when birds are electrocuted by their power lines.
But the administration has never fined or prosecuted a wind-energy company, even those that flout the law repeatedly. Instead, the government is shielding the industry from liability and helping keep the scope of the deaths secret.
The same treatment is not afforded to oil companies:
“We are all responsible for protecting our wildlife, even the largest of corporations,” Colorado U.S. Attorney David M. Gaouette said in 2009 when announcing Exxon Mobil had pleaded guilty and would pay $600,000 for killing 85 birds in five states, including Wyoming.
The Fish and Wildlife services claims to be in the process of looking into some cases of birds dying from wind power production, but we've yet to see any fines handed out. I'll let you know if that changes.