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Wind Farms

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 1st September 2004.

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Photo of Mr Alan Hurst Mr Alan Hurst Labour, Braintree

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the impact of wind farms on wild birds.

Photo of Stephen Timms Stephen Timms Minister of State (e-Commerce & Competitiveness)

I have been asked to reply.

The Government believes that the generation of electricity from wind farms can make a major contribution to achieving the 2010 targets for renewable energy. It is estimated that, if global warning continues as at present, 25 species of bird in Britain will be extinct by 2050.

The Department for Trade and Industry works closely with the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (which, like the DTI, has regulatory functions for offshore wind farm developments), the statutory nature conservation and other organisations as appropriate, to ensure that decisions on whether to grant consent for wind farm developments are considered in the light of the best available information about impacts on the environment and on birds in particular.

One of the outcomes of this close working is that applicants for consents for those offshore wind farm developments proposed under Round 2 of Crown Estate leasing, will be required to provide two years of bird survey data as part of the environmental reports that are submitted with consent applications.

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