This report details a Phase I Avian Risk Assessment for the proposed WindMar RE Project (hereafter the "Project"?), a medium sized wind power project located along the southern coast of Puerto Rico in the Municipality of Guayanilla. The assessment includes a literature review, interviews with local and regional experts (primarily agency staff), and site visits conducted by a wildlife biologist on December 3-5, 2002. Together, these sources of information provide an indication of the type of habitat present, as well as the number of birds that are known or suspected to use the Project site and the area surrounding the site. This information is then used to assess the degree of risk to birds from wind power development at the particular site. In addition, the concerns of agency biologists and regulators are determined and incorporated into the risk assessment.
The WindMar RE Project is projected to produce about 50 megawatts of emission-free electricity generated by about 28 to 60 turbines (900 to 1,800 kilowatt nameplate turbines). This is the equivalent of the energy consumed by nearly 20,000 households. The turbines would be mounted on tubular towers about 50-80 m (164-262 feet) in height. The rotor length would be about 26-40 m (85-131 feet). A subset of the towers would be lit according to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) recommendations if permitted by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Electrical lines on site would be underground with the exception of the interconnection to offsite transmission lines. Transmission lines of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) are located to within about 1-2 miles (1.6-3.2 km) to the northwest of the Project site.