When it comes to enforcing the environmental laws concerning certain species of federally-protected birds, the Obama administration and their environmentalist allies have been impressively diligent in charging oil companies, coal plants, and power stations when said birds get tangled up in their power lines or drown in their waste pits; in the past five years, prosecutors have managed to wrack up tens of millions of dollars in fines and settlements from various businesses, including oil and gas companies, for these egregious offenses.
When it comes to winds farms, however, the federal government has been oddly negligent in enforcing these same laws — which is weird, seeing as how the American wind industry kills hundred of thousands of birds every single year. The Associated Press reports that the Obama administration has yet to levy any fines or file any suits against wind companies, and that Congress is picking up on the rather glaring enforcement discrepancy:
It’s a double standard that some Republicans in Congress said Tuesday they would examine after an Associated Press investigation revealed that the Obama administration has shielded the wind power industry from liability and helped keep the scope of the deaths secret.
“We obviously don’t want to see indiscriminate killing of birds from any sort of energy production, yet the administration’s ridiculous inconsistencies begs questioning and clarity— clarity on why wind energy producers are let off the hook,” said Sen. David Vitter, R-La.
The House Natural Resources Committee, which was at the beginning stages of an investigation, vowed to dig deeper Tuesday.
“There are serious concerns that the Obama administration is not implementing this law fairly and equally,” said Jill Strait, a spokeswoman for the committee’s chairman, Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash. …
More than 573,000 birds are killed by the country’s wind farms each year, including 83,000 hunting birds such as hawks, falcons and eagles, according to an estimate published in March in the peer-reviewed Wildlife Society Bulletin.
Classic. Not only has President Obama issued billions in tax credit and subsidies to an industry that can’t manage to stand on its own two feet without the help, but his administration is exercising their ‘prosecutorial discretion’ in a manner that happens to be mighty convenient for their politically favored industry. They will enforce the laws where, when, and against whom they see fit, gosh darn it, because they have invested too much taxpayer money and political capital into creating the image of the eco-trendy, renewable-loving, all-of-the-above, future-investing and forward-thinking administration to do otherwise. It ain’t easy, pretending to be green — and sometimes that involves playing politics and determinedly looking the other way when a problem arises, okay?