Collisions of birds with power lines and lethal electric shocks pose a threat to certain bird species. European transmission system operators (TSOs) are aware of this and in order to minimise bird mortality from planned or existing infrastructure, TSOs collect significant amounts of data on birds. However, these data are often limited to specific projects or regions and are not collated. To better utilise the potential of this dispersed data for the benefit of birds, the Renewables Grid Initiative (RGI), an association of non-governmental organisations and transmission system operators (TSOs) from all over Europe, has initiated a collective data project.
Together with the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) and funded by the LIFE Programme of the European Union, RGI has compiled the report “Better utilisation and transparency of bird data collected by TSOs”, which has now been published. The aim of the joint effort is to provide the actors in the energy sector with the necessary information to reduce the negative impact of power lines on bird populations in the long term.
The data were collected through a questionnaire and a workshop session. The BTO and the RSPB have translated their findings into a comprehensive document which contains specific recommendations for market participants. The project partners intend to build on this work and contribute to the development of a tool to better understand the determinants of bird mortality and the effectiveness of mitigation measures.