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30 November 2023

Biosis experts on the world stage

In October, Biosis supported three consultants to attend and present at this year’s Conference on Wind Energy and Wildlife Impacts in Croatia. The theme for the conference focused on nature-inclusive upscaling of wind energy, binding together knowledge, innovation, technology, and biodiversity. The conference was attended by over 630 delegates from 46 countries. 

Senior Associate Zoologist Clare McCutcheon, Senior Zoologist Dr. Jonathan Botha, and Senior Zoologist Dr. Inka Veltheim represented Biosis at the conference and delivered compelling presentations to the international audience  on a range of topics relating to both onshore and offshore wind energy and wildlife. 

Clare McCutcheon's presentation, a novel approach to seabird collision risk modelling for the Australian offshore environment, discussed how the Biosis avian collision risk model has been adapted and utilised to manage data streams from multiple seabird survey methods to inform the Australian offshore wind industry. 

Dr Jonathan Botha presented the results from a validation study undertaken by Biosis, in his presentation titled Performance of the Biosis wind turbine avian collision risk model evaluated for two species of Australian eagles. This validation study is one of the only such studies that exists for collision risk models and generated a lot of international interest. 

Finally, Dr Inka Veltheim participated in a special session on the emerging collision risks to Old World Fruit Bats, where she presented on Grey-headed Flying-fox movements as an emerging issue for wind energy development in Australia.  

Jonathan said the experience was invaluable. 

"Attendance at the conference and, perhaps more importantly, the opportunity to present on the Biosis collision risk model was a huge boost to my professional development as a consultant,” he said. 

“This gave me first-hand experience in communicating the work we have done in the wind energy space, opening numerous interesting discussions with other delegates from all over the world." 

Despite the diverse geographic backgrounds of the conference delegates, a key takeaway was the recognition that they all face similar challenges and a motivation to achieve the best outcomes for wildlife as wind energy is upscaled globally. With the development of offshore wind more advanced in the Northern Hemisphere, the Biosis team had the chance to access key insights as Australia begins its offshore wind journey and we are excited to see what future advancements come from this experience. 

At Biosis we prioritise the learning and development of our people, and we’re proud have provided full funding for Clare, Jonathan and Inka to attend the conference. 

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