Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Environmental Group Sues Department of Interior for Failing to Disclose Documents on Wind Turbine Wildlife Impacts

The West Virginia Charleston Gazette is reporting this afternoon that an environmental group has filed suit against the U.S. Department of the Interior, alleging that Interior is illegally withholding documents related to the impact of wind turbines on wildlife.

Friends of Blackwater brought suit in federal court in West Virginia on Tuesday under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) seeking to compel Interior to release additional information alleged to be in its possession on wildlife injuries caused by wind turbines. The organization originally filed a FOIA request in August of 2003 seeking access to all documents in the agency's possession related to wildlife injuries caused by wind turbines. Fish and Wildlife Division's of Migratory Bird Management initially released some general documentation, and a follow-up response contained more data related to one wind project - the Altamont Pass project in California - but Friends of Blackwater says that it has not received any information on other projects in the U.S., including the Mountaineer site in West Virginia. The Organization's suit seeks a court order to require release of information on other sites.

The lawsuit brought by Friends of Blackwater is supported by 19 other citizen groups from across the nation as well as one international organization.

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