The Great Plains, long known for its agricultural products, is attracting new industries to the region that provide jobs and other economic benefits and address our nation’s need for energy. Some of these industries, such as wind power, also address the larger impact of climate change on wildlife. The Playa Lakes Joint Venture (PLJV) believes a proactive and collaborative approach is the best way to share knowledge and guide development for long-term wildlife conservation.
At PLJV, we create state-of-the-art maps and decision support tools to help our partners evaluate information in order to make effective, efficient decisions about conservation delivery. Many of the same tools that PLJV uses for biological planning can be adapted to help energy developers site new projects to minimize impacts to birds and their habitats. In some cases, where the impact cannot be avoided, these planning tools can be used to design workable offsets and mitigation.
Tools for industry include:
- Energy Development Siting Recommendations for Playas, which take a precautionary approach around playas by advising that all energy development and associated infrastructure avoid playa clusters
- Maps of Probable Playas for Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas by county
- Playa Decision Support System with specific state-based tools to guide potential negative impacts of wind energy development away from the most ecologically valuable playas
- Southern Plains Wind and Wildlife Planner for a set of species and ecosystems in Colorado and New Mexico
For more information on how PLJV can help your industry during the planning process — by providing or adapting current maps and tools or developing new ones for specific needs — contact PLJV Coordinator Mike Carter at 303-926-0777.