Gamesa has entered into a "Voluntary Wind Energy Cooperative Agreement" with the Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC). The Voluntary Agreement is an attempt by the PGC to get wind developers, who are currently unregulated, to monitor bird and bat collision impacts caused by massive industrial wind developments. The problem is that this "Voluntary Agreement" is totally worthless and does nothing to protect our natural heritage from destruction by the development of industrial wind energy facilities.
Attached here is a report from the Pennsylvania Biological Survey (PBS) that you should read. It concludes that the voluntary agreement is flawed and "will not help avoid or effectively mitigate the harmful impacts to our natural heritage from the pending development of industrial wind energy in Pennsylvania, or even serve to adequately monitor the effects such development has on wildlife."
The Voluntary Agreement contains no enforcement provisions. The PGC cannot stop the development of a wind plant under the Agreement. If the wind developer performs a few very basic, rudimentary, flawed studies, the PGC must give approval for the project - REGARDLESS OF WHAT STUDY RESULTS MIGHT INDICATE. There are no standards for evaluating the acceptability of pre-construction study results - NONE. So, if the studies show that a wind plant will kill and maim large numbers of birds and bats and fragment sensitive rare wildlife habitat - too bad. The Game Commission can do nothing about it. The Agreement is a total farce.
What's worse is that, in keeping with the Gamesa love of secrecy, the Voluntary Agreement - unbelievably - contains a "secrecy clause." Paragraph 13 of the Agreement allows Gamesa to block all public access to research information they collect under the Agreement if it is not "deemed to be in their best interest." Click here for the "secrecy clause". See for yourself. By keeping their "research information" secret, they can make it very difficult and expensive for a citizen to contest their projects.
This is like the Food & Drug Administration keeping drug testing information from the public. This provision, by itself, makes the Agreement worthless.
The PBS is a non-profit, scientific organization of professional biologists, incorporated under the laws of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania to act in an advisory capacity to the PGC on matters related to management and protection of mammals within Pennsylvania that fall under PGC jurisdiction. The PBS was not consulted by the PGC on the Voluntary Agreement. Instead wind companies went behind the back of the PBS.
The PBS has concluded that the Voluntary Agreement "provides very little real protection to wildlife and may help shelter the wind industry from growing criticism of environmental and wildlife impacts that can result from the development of wind energy facilities." It makes it seem like the wind companies are doing something to protect wildlife when in reality it’s all for show - calculated to fool the public.