Creating alternative energy sources can harm the wildlife. This conclusion was made by Australian scientists from the University of Queensland, writes the BBC.
Wind, solar and hydropower plants, which should replace energy from natural non-renewable resources, are often installed in specially protected areas. About 17% of all such installations are in reserves, which negatively affects the biodiversity of these areas.
At the same time, alternative energy sources occupy 10 times more area than a coal or gas station in order to produce the same amount of energy. For analysis, the team mapped the location of 12.5 thousand such objects – it turned out that 2.2 thousand of them are in protected areas. In addition, 169 of them were located in places where any type of construction was generally prohibited.
Researchers also say that energy projects, such as solar farms, often require new roads, and the people who service these plants build settlements near them. Most of all such objects in the territories prohibited for construction, scientists found in Germany – 258 pieces, in second place Spain – 248 objects, in the third – China and 142 objects. Nepal has 100 hydroelectric power stations, which are located on the territory of nature reserves.