Greens are blaming President Donald Trump for overturning a rule prohibiting the use of lead bullets on national wildlife reserves that some biologists blame for eagle deaths.
But before he left office, President Obama issued 30-year permits allowing the wind industry to legally kill thousands of eagles without penalty.
Still, 30 doctors and scientists sent Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke decrying the use of lead bullets, not wind energy.
The Guardian cites a 2014 study estimating 750 eagles killed over 30 years had died from poisoning, many eating lead bullet fragments inside carrion.
That’s 25 birds a year. Compare that to Obama’s revised permitting rule, which makes it legal for wind farms to “unintentionally” kill up to 4,200 eagles a year without fear of penalty or prison.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) managers said the mounting number of wind farms popping up near their habitats has led to thousands of these raptors getting chopped to pieces.
That’s 126,000 deaths over 30 years compared to poisoning by lead, which estimated only 750 were killed. That’s 168 times more eagle deaths than those from lead bullets.
The “eagle take” permit essentially tells the wind industry that eagles are akin to hunted animals.