02.25.2005 12:00 AM
NAB to FCC: 'Your Own Expert Can't be Sure' Towers Cause Bird Deaths
NAB says scientists don't really know for sure that taller towers with lights or guy wires represent more of a hazard to migratory birds than do shorter, unlit towers. NAB and a wireless association stated this position in a filing to the FCC.
The commission and the U.S. Forest Service are trying to gather information to determine if towers cause mass bird deaths, as some environmental groups believe.
Last year, Chairman Powell said there's not enough evidence to know one way or another and that's why the agencies commissioned an environmental study. NAB and the wireless association say the main conclusion reached by Avatar, which performed the study, is "scientific evidence on communication towers and avian mortality is inconsistent."
NAB said the agency doesn't have the legal authority to require industry to fund research to determine whether certain tower characteristics affect bird collisions.