BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A wind energy company has been sentenced to probation and ordered to pay more than $8 million in fines and restitution after at least 150 eagles were killed over the past decade at its wind farms across the U.S.
NextEra Energy subsidiary ESI Energy pleaded guilty to three misdemeanor counts of violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act during a Tuesday court appearance in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Prosecutors say the company was warned its wind farms would kill birds but proceeded anyway without getting a required permit.
They say the company also ignored advice about how to minimize the deaths.
NextEra President Rebecca Kujawa says collisions of birds with wind turbines are unavoidable.
It’s illegal to harm eagles under federal law.