Renewable Energy Wildlife Institute Launches — Solar + Wildlife

Renewable Energy Wildlife Institute Launches — Solar + Wildlife

1/21/2022 8:25:00 PM

Renewable Energy Wildlife Institute Launches — Solar + Wildlife

By John Rogers The American Wind Wildlife Institute (AWWI) has just become the Renewable Energy Wildlife Institute (REWI). That’s a good thing, and a sign of even better things to come. AWWI, now REWI (pronounced “ree-why”), is

(REWI). That’s a good thing, and a sign of even better things to come.AWWI, now REWI (pronounced “ree-why”), is a unique organization that brings together key stakeholders committed to expanding the scale and role of renewable energy in our power supply, while addressing wildlife and habitat issues at the same time.

The organization has been funding critical field research to help close gaps in understanding of the impacts of renewables on wildlife and habitat. And it has been sharing those findings broadly to better inform siting and permitting decisions around particular projects, and to spur innovations in avoiding and minimizing impacts. It has also served as a convenor of those key stakeholders to ensure better communication and coordination of research findings and needs.

Read more: CleanTechnica »

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Renewable Energy Wildlife Institute (REWI). That’s a good thing, and a sign of even better things to come. AWWI, now REWI (pronounced “ree-why”), is a unique organization that brings together key stakeholders committed to expanding the scale and role of renewable energy in our power supply, while addressing wildlife and habitat issues at the same time. The organization has been funding critical field research to help close gaps in understanding of the impacts of renewables on wildlife and habitat. And it has been sharing those findings broadly to better inform siting and permitting decisions around particular projects, and to spur innovations in avoiding and minimizing impacts. It has also served as a convenor of those key stakeholders to ensure better communication and coordination of research findings and needs. UCS has been an active part of this effort since AWWI’s inception. We helped launch AWWI in 2008 because we saw the importance of bringing science to bear on wildlife issues and opportunities in the scale-up of wind power. And because we saw the power of partnering with conservation organizations and the wind industry to make that happen. Solar, too, presents wildlife opportunities Now REWI is bringing that focus on science and the power of those partnerships to solar too, to ensure even more a responsible and sustainable renewable energy transition. “Solar is a vital renewable energy solution to reduce carbon emissions that threaten wildlife, so this is a significant and timely change,” explains Jim Murphy of the National Wildlife Federation, chair of the REWI board. “REWI’s expertise in facilitating collaborative, science-based solutions to wind-wildlife challenges makes it uniquely well-positioned to answer similar, pressing questions about the potential impacts of solar on wildlife.” In 2008, wind power was where the action in clean energy was. Solar power was really small potatoes (despite my best efforts, since it’s where I got my start 30 years ago). Things are different now. Wind is big and growing. Solar is growing even faster now and catching up quickly. Both had record years in 2021, and when we see the final generation numbers for the year they’ll likely have added up to close to 12 percent of US electricity supply. And we’re counting on both wind and solar to do a lot more, and in the very near term, and far beyond. So expanding AWWI’s remit and transforming it to REWI seems a great move. It’s also consistent with other recent steps to recognize the synergies to be had in addressing a range of technologies for the clean energy transition, such as the American Wind Energy Association’s