Rare bats stop wind farm plans
A rare species of bat has brought to a halt plans to build a series of wind farms in southern Sweden, reports news agency TT.
The power company Eolus wants to set up six wind power turbines with a height of 150 metres in a wooded area of Arkelstorp-Brännskulla. However the presence of breeding roosts of the threatened species of Western Barbastelle bats has prompted the local County Administration Board to turn down planning permission.
Eolus proposed that the wind turbines could be switched off at night during the summer when the bats are out hunting. The administration's environment board responded by saying that the wind farms would change the forest environment which the bats need to breed and survive, reports local newspaper Kristianstadsbladet.
The small nosed bats are protected under the European Habitats Directive. It is estimated that there are around 1,000 Barbastelle bats in the whole of Sweden.