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Sage grouse and wind power.  With more than 50% of the state designated as sage ecosystem, Wyoming is home to the rare sage grouse as well as a draw to wind turbine power companies seeking to construct towers on flat stretches of windy, open land.  The overlap is proving more controversial than originally anticipated.  The Audubon Society is proposing smart development of wind power to keep turbines and construction away from the notoriously fickle and sensitive sage grouse.  Wyoming Audubon's senior biologist, Kevin Doherty, describes sagebrush as a "subtle" ecosystem, the kind of land that, although home to a unique flora and fauna, is typically viewed as wasteland.  This is exactly what wind developers are capitalizing on, explains Wyoming Audubon's Executive Director Brian Rutledge.  Rutledge, sensitive to the importance of the grouse, proposes an alternative solution to exploit land where there is already a significant human footprint for wind turbines.Portraits of Brian Rutledge, Audubon's Vice President for the Rocky Mountain Region and Executive Director of Wyoming Audubon.
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Sage grouse and wind power. With more than 50% of the state designated as sage ecosystem, Wyoming is home to the rare sage grouse as well as a draw to wind turbine power companies seeking to construct towers on flat stretches of windy, open land. The overlap is proving more controversial than originally anticipated. The Audubon Society is proposing smart development of wind power to keep turbines and construction away from the notoriously fickle and sensitive sage grouse. Wyoming...
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  • Copyright Matthew B. Slaby
  • Location: Laramie Wyoming
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  • Author: Matt Slaby
  • Credit: Matt Slaby/LUCEO
  • PhotoShelter ID: I000074xE0T5zphk

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