WEST has successfully worked for stakeholders involved in renewable energy issues, including state and federal agencies, industry, consultants, utilities, and conservation organizations. The most significant of these has been and continues to be wildlife studies to support commercial wind and solar energy development. WEST is often credited with having invented and/or refined many of the field and analytical methodologies that have become standard practice in this field in the US and North America.
WEST has been a leader in the field of energy project impact assessment, monitoring, natural resources research, and permitting since 1990. WEST has successfully worked for stakeholders involved in energy issues, including state and federal agencies, industry, consultants, utilities, and conservation organizations. Our team includes professional scientists and statisticians that understand wind energy development and operations and have strong relationships with local and regional staff within the US Fish and Wildlife Service and other federal agencies, such as the Bureau of Land Management, as well as state and local agencies.
WEST employs recognized experts in wind energy–wildlife interactions, including direct project experience providing the wind energy industry and agencies with expert consultation regarding Eagle Conservation Plans, predicting fatality rate prediction, and resource equivalency analysis, including work with the American Wind Wildlife Institute and the American Wind Energy Association. We maintain one of the most comprehensive libraries of national and international wind power research in the US.
WEST’s environmental planning and permitting staff support the entire life cycle of solar projects, including site selection, baseline surveys, permitting, pre-construction surveys, restoration, and post-construction monitoring. We understand how to evaluate the existing ecological conditions, negotiate appropriate studies and mitigation with agency staff, and oversee construction activities in a manner that is efficient while maximizing value.
WEST’s ecologists and statisticians have learned how to take their extensive experience with wildlife issues in the renewable energy markets in the US and Canada and apply it to emerging renewable energy markets in Latin America and other regions. Couple this scientific expertise with one of the most extensive renewable energy databases on wins-wildlife issues of any private company in the US, and WEST is uniquely capable of providing a broad suite of environmental services for projects internationally.
Wildlife collisions with the physical structures of offshore wind energy facilities can often be difficult to estimate. A WEST team recently produced a quantitative prediction model of the fatality rates of “rufa” red knots from collisions with an approved, but not yet built offshore wind energy project in the federal waters of Nantucket Sound, Massachusetts. The work was contracted by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.
Our team developed an original simulation model containing the industry standard model (band) at its core but that also incorporated an unprecedented level of biological detail.