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To some persons, wind farms represent a way to reduce America's dependence on various non-renewable energy resources. Still others feel that these wind farms are having an increasingly deleterious effect on various endangered animal populations, including certain species of bats, red-tailed hawks, and golden eagles. One of the most well-known wind turbine farms in the United States, located in the Diablo Mountains between San Francisco and the Central Valley, has come under increasing scrutiny due to the fact that it spans an international migratory bird route. It is estimated that close to 5,000 birds are killed annually by accidentally flying into the fiberglass blades on the massive turbines that have become noted icons of the region. Many commentators and scientists have noted that debates and controversy will continue to surround these turbines due to the fact that 17 states has passed laws which require that some of their future energy come from renewable sources. In past months, the issue of whether or not future wind turbines should be built has come to be a contentious subject in Nantucket Sound, West Virginia, and Kansas.The first article comes from this Monday's USA Today, and examines the ongoing debate over the highly criticized Altamont Pass wind-power project and its effect on certain protected bird populations. The second link leads to a fine piece from the Concord Monitor that provides insight into the revelation that many bats are being killed by flying into wind turbines in West Virginia. Going to the third link here provides some insights into the growing popularity of wind power, as this article from the Shreveport Times elucidates the government's role in providing tax breaks to energy companies operating such facilities. The fourth link will take visitors to a helpful resource page about wind and hydropower technologies offered by the U.S Department of Energy. The fifth link leads to the homepage of the American Wind Energy Association. Here visitors can learn about the organization's work, and read industry news and information on some of their sponsored events. The final link leads to a webpage provided by the Center for Biological Diversity that talks about the effects of the Altamont Pass wind project on wildlife, along with offering some material about the Center's watchdog efforts.
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