Aug 17, 2012
Researcher to monitor impact of renewable energy on bird lifeBack
Construction|Africa|BirdLife South Africa|Investec|Projects|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Sustainable|Africa|South Africa|Energy|Environmental Management|Green-energy Initiatives|Renewable-energy Developments|Renewable-energy Generation|Wind Energy|Environmental|Hanneline Smit|Infrastructure|Michael Meeser|Samantha Ralston
© Reuse this
A senior researcher has been appointed by nongovernmental conservation organisation BirdLife South Africa to monitor and report on the impact of renewable-energy generation on bird life, specifically regarding wind farms, says BirdLife South Africa conservation manager Dr Hanneline Smit.
Samantha Ralston holds a master’s degree in conservation biology, has seven years’ experience reviewing environmental-impact assessments and joined BirdLife South Africa as birds and renewable energy manager on August 1.
Her position will have the overarching task of reducing the impact of renewable-energy developments on birds and their habitats and is sponsored by finan- cial institution Investec Capital Markets, says Smit.
“While positive steps are being taken to achieve a sustainable energy mix for South Africa, little is understood of the broader environmental impact of certain renewable energies. Working with BirdLife South Africa gives us the opportunity to invest in the capacity to produce quality data to inform future decisions,” explains Investec Resource & Infrastructure Finance head Michael Meeser.
The key goals of the partnership between Investec and BirdLife South Africa are ensuring that minimum standards can be applied to local and, potentially, international green-energy initiatives, providing a responsible framework for the development of these projects and aligning the costs of environmental management.
“Although supportive of greener energy production, BirdLife South Africa is cognisant of the possible negative impacts of wind-energy facilities on avifauna and believes it is important that decisions are taken prior to construction to reduce the impact on birds,” says Smit.
The appointment of a dedicated individual to research and monitor the impact of wind-farm projects is a first for the country, she adds.
“In this role, Ralston will endeavour to make all developers and avifaunal specialists comply with the non-negotiable aspects of monitoring. She must also keep records of the cumulative impacts of developments on bird populations, especially where there are several developments in an area.
“Ralston must manage all queries regarding the Avian Wind Sensitivity Map, a tool developed by BirdLife South Africa and its partners, and update the map as new information becomes available.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Environment News
Recent Research Reports
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
This Week's Magazine
Projected capital expenditure (capex) in the South African automotive assembly industry should reach a record R7.48-billion this year, says the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) in its 2014 fourth quarter business review. Capex...
After several years of navigating project-threatening red tape and currency fluctuations, the 4.4 MW Bronkhorstspruit biogas power plant, which will supply clean energy to a leading automotive manufacturer in Gauteng, is expected to enter production before June....
South African paper and pulp producer Sappi reported earlier this month that it would build a pilot plant for the production of low-cost Cellulose NanoFibrils, or CNF (nanocellulose) at the Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Sittard-Geleen in the Netherlands.
The long-term outlook for Nigeria is a country that has the potential to be very strong. So affirmed International Monetary Fund (IMF) Nigeria Mission Chief and Senior Resident Representative Dr Gene Leon on recently. "But we are starting from a point of huge...
Poor infrastructure planning and inadequate maintenance are becoming increasingly problematic for new developments and the associated infrastructure required to support such developments. In many urban and rural municipalities, the state of infrastructure has been...