This report summarizes relevant data to assess the potential operational impacts of the proposed NextEra Energy Resources Montezuma II Wind Project (Montezuma II Wind project or proposed project) on avian and bat species. The primary purpose of this assessment is to provide information to Solano County (County) on expected avian and bat mortality from the proposed project. The County is the lead agency for the proposed project under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and recently began preparing an environmental impact report (EIR) for the project. Information in this report will be reviewed and used by the County, as appropriate, to evaluate the significance of the project's impacts on avian and bat species relative to CEQA standards.
Through coordination with state and federal resource agencies, counties in California reviewing wind resource development proposals assess the impacts of potential avian and bat mortality and, in some cases, implement mitigation to help offset these impacts. These assessments are undertaken to comply with state and federal laws and regulations designed to protect avian and bat resources, such as CEQA, the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. The assessments generally entail a preconstruction investigation of avian and bat populations in and around the proposed project area, as well as an estimate of the extent of potential collision-based mortality. Estimates of potential avian and bat mortality are typically derived using mortality data collected from surveys at nearby wind energy facilities or from other facilities if local data are not available. Following the approval and construction of a wind project, post-construction monitoring is generally required to determine the facility's actual collision mortality rate.