Wind energy company pleads guilty to killing 150 eagles.
BILLING: A wind energy company has been sentenced to probation and ordered to pay more than $8 million in fines and restitution after at least 150 eagles died over the past decade at its wind farms in eight states, they said Wednesday. federal prosecutors.
NextEra Energy subsidiary ESI Energy pleaded guilty to three counts of violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act during a court appearance Tuesday in Cheyenne, Wyoming. He was accused of killing eagles at three of his wind farms in Wyoming and New Mexico.
In addition to those deaths, golden and bald eagles have been killed at wind farms affiliated with ESI and NextEra since 2012 in eight states, prosecutors said: Wyoming, California, New Mexico, North Dakota, Colorado, Michigan, Arizona and Illinois. Birds are killed when they fly into the blades of wind turbines. Some ESI turbines killed multiple eagles, prosecutors said.
It is illegal to kill or harm eagles under federal law.
The bald eagle, the national symbol of the US, was removed from protection under the Endangered Species Act in 2007, following a dramatic recovery from widespread destruction due to harmful pesticides and other problems.
Golden eagles have not fared as well, with populations considered stable but under pressure, including from wind farms, vehicle collisions, illegal shootings and lead ammunition poisoning.