Save the Right Whale’s Calving Waters

Target: Tommy Beaudreau, director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management

Goal: Move planned construction of a new wind farm away from the only known right whale calving area

As we move into the new year, finding sustainable ways to power the world becomes even more important. However, the development of clean energy should never come at the cost of an endangered species’ survival. Unfortunately, a new wind energy facility is currently scheduled to be built in the only known North Atlantic right whale calving area off of Georgia’s Tybee Island. If plans for this wind farm proceed, the perilously endangered right whale could disappear from our oceans for good.

Only 400 North Atlantic right whales survive in the wild today. Human activity has caused half of all recorded right whale deaths in the past 40 years, as whales die after being struck by ships or entangled in fixed fishing gear. The odds of these whales recovering their numbers in the near future look grim; 2012 was the worst calving season since 2000. Only seven calves were sighted–well below the annual average of 20–and only six of those are believed to have survived.

Interfering with the right whale’s only calving area will only disrupt the species’ recovery further. This fragile population needs its own space to live and reproduce in peace, safely away from human development. Building a wind farm in the whale’s calving grounds may spell a death sentence for this endangered species. Urge the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to move this energy facility where it can’t do harm.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Tommy Beaudreau,

The North Atlantic right whale has just one known calving area in the Atlantic Ocean. It’s located right off of Tybee Island in Georgia in the very same location where the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is now planning to build a new wind farm. This population’s dangerously low numbers–formerly thought to be on the rebound–could be depleted to nothing if its only calving waters are encroached upon by human development.

Building clean energy facilities is an indispensable strategy for combating global warming, but forward-thinking energy development doesn’t have to come at the expense of endangered animals. Other locations could be equally suitable for building a wind farm. I urge you to reconsider plans to build a wind energy facility atop the only right whale calving ground for the sake of this species’ last fragile population.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Dr. Haus via WikiCommons

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