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Ecosystems, Wildlife, and Homegrown Renewable Energy: Smart Science for Decision Makers

Photo: Scientists have found that wind turbines are causing fatalities of certain species of migratory insect-eating bats. Credit: Paul Cryan, USGS.

Interest is booming in renewable energy sources, especially in the areas of wind, solar, and biofuels. Such energy sources have huge benefits, including diversification of the nation’s energy portfolio, new jobs, and potential reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Yet these energy sources sometimes have adverse effects on ecosystems and the wildlife that live in them, such as bats, birds, and reptiles and amphibians. More >>




Renewable Energy and Wildlife Research Topics



Recent Highlights

Photo: Needles District of Canyonlands National Park . Photograph credit: Tonya Troxler, USGS.
Photo: Needles District of Canyonlands National Park . Photograph credit:Tonya Troxler, USGS.

Homegrown Energy: Deserts Blooming with Biofuels? - USGS scientist Sasha Reed and other USGS researchers are actively evaluating the potential for and consequences of biofuel production in the Southwest. These scientists are conducting research to find answers to questions such as, what happens when biofuels are incorporated in different soil types and landscapes of the Southwest? And what effects will biofuel production have on ecosystems, dust production, or water quality and quantity? Read More >>

Ecosystems Science

long-tail duck
Photo: Needles District of Canyonlands National Park. Photograph credit:Tonya Troxler, USGS.

Duck! Long-Tail Ducks Avoid Cape Wind Energy Project: Satellite tracking of long-tail ducks over three wintering seasons confirms that while they use the Nantucket Sound regularly in their daily movements, they did not use the area proposed for the Cape Wind Energy Project as a roosting site during the time frame of the study.

The U.S. Geological Survey research looked at one of the world’s largest populations of long-tail ducks and found that hundreds of thousands of these elusive birds engage in a bizarre 30-50 mile morning commute from Nantucket Sound to the Atlantic Ocean, returning each evening. Read the article >>


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