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This is how we protect biodiversity and birdlife around our power grids

Together with our electrical distribution company, e-distribución, we are involved in numerous projects to protect birdlife in the territories where we operate, working with local administrations.

Protection project for Bonelli's eagle in Catalonia and Aragon.
Protection project for Bonelli's eagle in Catalonia and Aragon.

In addition to delivering electricity to businesses and homes, developing innovative initiatives for the electricity grid and working to promote safety, e-distribución,  our electricity distribution subsidiary, works to care for and preserve the natural environment.

e-distribución's commitment to preserve the environment and biodiversity has led to the many biodiversity programmes we have developed since 2003, in which protection has always played a leading role. We are currently involved in many areas of action for the protection of birdlife.

 

Protection and signalling devices

As part of the standardisation of devices to protect birds, our subsidiary has been at the forefront of incorporating the requirement to protect birdlife into its designs and approval processes.

Collaborations have been set up with public administrations to meet the signalling requirements in the Environmental Impact Statements for new power line projects, to help protect birdlife.

 

Collaboration with Autonomous Communities

e-distribución has promoted collaboration agreements with regional administrations to plan and adapt the highest priority lines and supports, in agreement with the competent bodies.

This has led to adaptation plans being adopted and overseen by Monitoring Committees composed of Endesa Distribución Eléctrica and the bodies responsible for environmental protection in the Autonomous Communities. These "Birdlife Agreements" are currently in place in Aragon, the Balearic Islands, the Canary Islands, Andalusia and Catalonia.

 

European Union LIFE projects

e-distribución has been involved in many projects under the European Union LIFE Programme to protect and preserve birdlife in the territories where we operate.

One example is the LIFE project for the protection of the Egyptian vulture, working with e-distribuzione, Enel's distribution company in Italy. This initiative is underway in Lanzarote, Fuerteventura, Basilicata, Calabria and Sicily, and includes the release of specimens bred in captivity, in addition to adapting supports in these regions.

Egyptian vultures.
Egyptian vultures

A range of volunteering projects

Conservation and protection of the Bonelli's eagle. In 2020, the Endesa Foundation launched a project to develop and fit  Bonelli's eagles with geolocation transmitters. These advanced transmitters give us greater knowledge of the behaviour and habitat of this species, enabling us to define appropriate conservation measures.

CORACIAS project, conservation of the European roller. We have been working with the Friends of the Aiguamolls Natural Park to monitor and study the population of European rollers for several years. This project promotes the installation of nesting boxes in electricity pylons.

Supplementary feeding points for vultures. 2021 marks 10 years since we started driving the project to create Supplementary Feeding Points. This initiative was launched by the Trenca Association and, more recently, also the Rural Nature Association, to contribute to the preservation of the four European vulture species.

Capercaillie project. In 2020 we began a partnership project at the initiative of the organisation Paisatges Vius to facilitate the signalling of medium-voltage lines in the Lált Pirineu natural park, to foster the development of this species in this high mountain environment.

 

CORACIAS project European roller.
CORACIAS project European roller.

Stakeholder partnerships

In addition to numerous actions in coordination with protection bodies, such as the ICRA (Institut per la Conservació dels Rapinyaires), our work with protection bodies includes the project with SEO Birdlife from 2012 for signalling a stretch of line on the island of Fuerteventura using the then-novel device of mobile beacons.

 

Publications and awareness-raising activities

Between 1993 and 2004 we worked with the prestigious biologist Miguel Ferrer to adapt the highest priority supports in Andalusia. All the work, research and most important conclusions from this work were collected in the book "Birds and power lines". This book became one of the first reference guides for adaptation solutions for power lines, anticipating the regulations that would subsequently be established through Royal Decree 1432/2008. 

Stork and nest on power lines.
Stork and nest on power lines.

Our education and awareness-raising activities for the protection of birdlife include conferences organised by e-distribución to share knowledge and best practices with public administrations and conservation bodies. The most recent of these was held in Mallorca in October 2021, where the main conclusions of e-distribución's Avilínia Programme in the Balearic Islands were reported.

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