While wind energy remains a preferred source of renewable energy, understanding the full spectrum of impacts are vital to balance climate-related benefits against their costs to biodiversity. Environmental impact assessments often fail to assess cumulative effects at larger spatial scales. In this respect, life cycle assessments are better suited, but have to date mainly focused on greenhouse gas emissions and energy accounting. Here, we adapt a recent global life-cycle impact assessment (LCA) methodology to evaluate collision, disturbance and habitat loss impacts of onshore wind energy development on bird species richness in Norway. The advantage of a local model for Norway is that it enables employing species distribution models to more accurately estimate the potential distribution area of species. This facilitates more realistic site- and species-specific assessments of potential impacts within a local scale but excludes habitat ranges outside Norway. Furthermore, a new characterization factor was developed for potential barrier effects. Larger onshore wind-power plants overall had greater site-specific potentially disappeared fractions (PDF) of species, while smaller plants were less efficiently located with greater impacts per GWh. Overall, Norwegian wind-power plants were sited least efficiently (PDF/GWh) regarding indirect habitat loss (2.186 × 10−9) and disturbance (1.219 × 10−9), followed by direct habitat loss (0.932 × 10−9), and finally collisions (0.040 × 10−9) and barriers (0.310 × 10−9). Vulnerability differed among bird groups with seabirds, raptors and waterfowl emerging as the most impacted groups (e.g. 5.143 × 10−9, 3.409 × 10−9 and 3.139 × 10−9 PDF/GWh for disturbance, respectively); highlighting the sympatric distribution of their habitats and the majority of Norway's onshore wind-power plants. Current practice has not succeeded in avoiding sites with higher impacts for birds, fuelling conflicts surrounding environmental concerns of onshore wind energy development in Norway. Operative LCA models can help decision-makers assessing localized life-cycle environmental impacts to support environmental-friendly wind energy production in specific regions.