WASHINGTON, March 26 (UPI) -- Voluntary guidelines for onshore wind projects in the United States set the bar for responsible clean-energy development, an industry official said.
The U.S. Department of the Interior released a set of voluntary guidelines meant to ensure developers take action to lessen the effects on wildlife and associated habitats.
Denise Bode, chief executive officer of the American Wind Energy Association, said the guidelines would help boost the U.S. wind energy sector in an environmentally conscious way.
"The country needs more wind energy for its American manufacturing and construction jobs, environmental benefits and national energy security," she said. "These guidelines set the highest standard, either voluntary or mandatory, of wildlife protection for any industry."
The Interior Department said increased interest in wind energy made the voluntary guidelines necessary. The guidelines are meant to assist developers in identifying bird, bat and other potentially threatened or endangered species that might be affected by wind energy developments.
The voluntary guidelines go into effect immediately.
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