Wind turbines generate renewable energy and are becoming more prevalent. As development increases, measures need to be taken to protect the local wildlife. A wind farm is a large-scale development, covering acres of space and stretching hundreds of feet into the air.
Bat species can be impacted by commercial wind facilities, and the federally endangered Indiana bat is no exception. Following two documented takes of this species in a two-year period, a wind farm in Indiana initiated the Incidental Take Permit (ITP) process with the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
Stantec was hired as a third party contractor to work with the US Fish and Wildlife Service to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and provide related National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) compliance services for the project’s ITP. With the overall goals of avoiding, minimizing, and mitigating the incidental take of the federally endangered Indiana bat, the EIS evaluated the impacts of various alternatives, including those outlined in the project’s habitat conservation plan.
Our work included managing the EIS, coordinating scoping and public outreach; direct, indirect, and cumulative impact determinations; alternatives analyses; and developing the draft and final NEPA documents.