Bats and Wind Turbines
CEC undertake bat surveys required to inform planning applications for wind turbines, across Cornwall and Devon. Whether you are considering to erect a single small turbine, or a wind farm. There is evidence in Europe and the USA of bat casualties at wind farms, and species which have been recorded as casualties in Continental Europe do also occur in the UK.
The local planning authority will therefore need to see some form of bat survey and assessment to accompany your planning application. We can advise you on the most appropriate types of survey, which will depend on the nature of the proposal:
- A single small – medium turbine (10-30m hub height or 5-100kw)
- A single large turbine
- More than one wind turbine
For single, small-medium turbines, the survey needs to follow the recommended approach for bats and small wind turbines in Cornwall produced by Cornwall Council, Natural England and Cornwall Wildlife Trust. If your turbine is located within 50m of a habitat feature such as a hedge, then the survey will consist of a walkover survey and a period of remote monitoring for 1 or 2 weeks, depending on the time of year. Note that the remote monitoring can only be undertaken between April and October.
For single large turbines, we will design a survey methodology on a case by case basis and following Natural England guidance (TIN059) bats and single large turbines and is likely to involve a walkover survey and at least one period of remote monitoring, possibly with further remote monitoring or one or more activity surveys.
For more than one wind turbine, we will again design the methodology on a case by case basis, taking into account the size of the project, its location and known records of bat activity in the vicinity of the site. The surveys will follow Natural England guidance (TIN051) bats and onshore wind turbines (interim guidance). The survey is likely to require several activity surveys between May and September, along with some remote monitoring work.
The most effective mitigation for bats is to keep turbines as far as possible from features that are well used by bats, so it is helpful if you can contact us as early as possible in the project so that you can use our survey work to inform the turbine layout as far as possible.