Could rare local birds affect your solar power plans?

Many kinds of endangered animals and migratory songbirds live in or travel through Texas. Raptors like bald eagles and black hawks, which are also classified as threatened, have federal protection, as so many other birds. The Southwestern Willow Flycatcher, the whooping crane, the golden-cheeked warbler and the Eskimo curlew are all endangered birds you might encounter in Texas.

If you intend to develop rural property where you live or that you purchased for a business for solar energy generation purposes, the presence of certain kinds of birds might be cause for concern. There are rules that prohibit activities that would affect the life cycle of endangered species and migratory songbirds, as well as most birds of prey.

Concerns about the welfare of nearby birds could potentially have an impact on solar operations.

What people know about birds and solar energy

When someone interested in a large-scale solar energy project faces pushback, concerns about local bird populations are often among the reasons given. One of the most persistent stories shared about the dangers of solar panels involves birds dying because they mistake the panels for water and may swoop into land and end up crashing or that they die because they fly through the sections of can occur over dark-colored solar panels.

While there are thousands of bird deaths directly related to solar energy production, experts point out that all forms of energy production have an impact on birds, including oil and gas extraction. Pollution from traditional power plants can also harm birds, as can many other aspects of energy production, storage and distribution.

Unless there is a known nesting population of a very endangered species in close proximity to the property you intend to develop, you likely don’t have to worry too much about claims related to birds preventing your solar project from coming to fruition.

Addressing community concerns will help your project

Whether you are a homeowner whose neighbors take issue with your planned project or the executive of a business that wants to start large-scale solar production in the area, learning more about the complaints and concerns that people have related to solar energy production can help you get more people in the community on your side.

Proactively identifying and addressing issues related to solar energy production in Texas will make it easier for you to move forward with a project.