WEST Celebrates Bat Appreciation Day!

Bats play important, and often underappreciated, roles in our ecosystems. They serve as key pollinators for several plant species and help control insect populations. Bats also play an important role in economic ecosystems by reducing the impact of pest outbreaks on crop production. WEST recognizes these roles, and we have developed tools and approaches our clients can use to reduce project impacts to bats. 

One of those tools is WEST’s Optimized Smart Curtailment (WEST’s OSC) program. The primary method used by the wind industry to reduce bat mortality is known as blanket curtailment, which limits wind turbine blade rotation below a defined wind speed at night. However, bats are not active or at risk during all hours of the night, meaning that blanket curtailment results in the loss of clean energy production. WEST’s OSC program combines our bat biology and statistical expertise to develop algorithms predicting when bat-wind turbine collision risk may be highest based on weather and other important variables. We also use modeling approaches to simultaneously optimize energy production. This is a win-win proposition for bats and the wind industry. Learn more about our OSC program here: https://west-inc.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/04/Optimized-Smart-Curtailment-SOQ_FINAL.pdf