The Avian Ecology team is delighted to hear that the Glendye Wind Farm was recently awarded planning permission, following appeal.

Increasing onshore wind energy capacity whilst also protecting and supporting the recovery of scarce raptor species has long been acknowledged as a conservation challenge. However, as the recent planning permission awarded to Coriolis Energy for their Glendye project demonstrates, with strong evidence, comprehensive data analysis and a positive approach to landscape-scale benefits, it is possible to achieve an all-round win. The Scottish wind farm industry leads the world in this global challenge, with an exponential increase in installed wind energy capacity occurring at the same time as Golden Eagle and White-tailed Eagle populations continue to recover and grow.

Avian Ecology assisted Coriolis throughout all stages of the project, from conception through to the recent positive planning inquiry decision. The development comprises 26 wind turbines of 150m height, located on an upland grouse moor in Aberdeenshire.  Understanding the potential for impacts on birds and in particular raptors, involved a huge amount of detailed survey effort using skilled surveyors. This was followed by comprehensive data analysis, including population viability analysis and Golden Eagle Topographical (GET) modelling, which led to sensitive project layout and to the delivery of mitigation and enhancement measures. The development includes a long-term commitment to a Regional Eagle Conservation Management plan. This approach looks to deliver benefits for raptors well beyond the boundary of a planning application site and delivers positive conservation measures which will ultimately help to boost numbers of eagles and other raptors in the east of Scotland.

Avian Ecology specialise in onshore wind development projects with complex ornithological challenges, and has extensive experience on sites across Scotland, England and Wales. We are committed to meeting the challenges of increasing renewables whilst ensuring positive outcomes for wildlife, and it is truly rewarding to see this approach leading to positive outcomes.