6 July 2010
Dorset school's 'bird killer' wind turbine turned off
The school is talking with the county council about the turbine A primary school in Dorset has switched off its wind turbine after seabirds kept getting killed by the blades.
Southwell Primary on Portland saw 14 birds killed in six months after it was installed 18 months ago.
Head teacher Stuart McLeod said he has been coming to school early to clear up the dead birds to minimise the distress to pupils.
The RSPB welcomed the move. Talks have started between the school and Dorset County Council about the turbine.
The turbine was installed with a grant from the Department of Energy and Climate Change.
It was providing 6kW - about 40% of the school's electricity.
Mr McLeod said there had been a "rapid succession of birds".
He said: "It occurred at all times of the day so there was no regular pattern so we started recording when they were taking place and reporting it to the council.
"But we were left with no option but to put the brake on the turbine."
Tony Whitehead, RSPB spokesman, said: "Obviously the RSPB is very concerned about climate change, it is one of the biggest threats that we have to the environment.
"So alternative energy is incredibly important.
"But of course we want to see wind turbines placed in situations where they are going to have no impact on the environment and on wildlife."
Negotiations between the school and county council are continuing to find a way forward.