A forthcoming documentary about the construction of wind farms in the North Atlantic claims that such projects are putting a species of whale under threat of “imminent extinction”.
Thrown To The Wind illustrates claims that building wind farms in in the area is causing significant harm to the North Atlantic right whale, described as “one of the world’s most endangered large whale species” by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
According to Michael Shellenberger, an environmental activist involved in the documentary, wind farm construction appears to be impacting the whales in two ways: an increase in ship traffic in previously peaceful areas and through high-decibel pile-driving and sonar mapping.
Speaking to Brussels Signal, Shellenberger said the documentary also showed that government workers and scientists investigating the matter “either haven’t done the basic mapping and acoustic research to back up their claims, have done the research badly, or found what we found, and are covering it up”.
“Thrown To The Wind blows the lid off a major scientific scandal and will have an exponentially larger effect than past warnings,” he added.
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— Brussels Signal (@brusselssignal) August 9, 2023
Although focusing heavily on wind-turbine construction off the coast of the United States, the documentary’s findings may have repercussions for the renewables industry in the European Union.
As well as living off the coast of the United States, the North Atlantic right whale’s habitat also extends into EU waters, with the endangered species found off the coast of Norway, Ireland, France, Spain and Portugal.
The controversy surrounding the construction of wind farms at sea in Europe has been mounting in recent months, with a number of animal-protection groups warning Brussels that the renewable energy source poses serious dangers to aquatic wildlife.
Fishermen have also expressed concern regarding the impact off-shore wind farms are having on the European fishing industry, with some government representatives saying there is no longer any balance between the interests of fishermen and the energy sector.
“The current trend of measures put forward by the EU are leading to fisheries’ disappearance,” an MEP for the Galician Nationalist Bloc warned.
“We do not want offshore projects to destroy our maritime wealth and that is why we are asking for the prohibition of these wind farms off the coast of Galicia,” the MEP added.
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— Brussels Signal (@brusselssignal) August 10, 2023