Renewable energy in harmony with nature

When setting up wind and solar farms there is a constant emphasis on preserving and protecting the flora and fauna. This is not just for the sake of nature per se, but is also beneficial for site owners and local businesses.

In contrast to the far-reaching effects on the landscape that lignite mining entails, for example, wind and solar plants can be dismantled in just a few days without leaving behind detrimental changes to the environment. When building, UKA makes efforts to limit any interference in the environment as far as possible and seeks to implement compensatory measures in other areas to offset the impact.

What are compensatory measures?

As part of setting up an energy park UKA guarantees that the ecosystem and its features will be preserved. The value of the ecosystem surrounding energy parks is preserved by, for example, committing to reforestation or unsealing cultivated areas.

We can draw a technical distinction between compensatory and replacement measures. Where the measures are implemented in the same way on the site where the structure has been built this is termed compensatory. Where the measures are implemented in the same way but at a different location this is termed replacement. UKA adheres strictly to the German Federal Nature Conservation Act (Bundesnaturschutzgesetz) (§§ 13) as well as to the Federal Forestry Act (Waldgesetz) (§§ 9 to 12).

Economic and ecological profit

Landowners who make their premises available to UKA for compensatory measures will receive an attractive remuneration. The company-owned developer (UKA project management organisation) commissions local people who maintain or farm the land in the region.

They implement the measures in the manner directed by the licensing authorities. External surveyors check that everything has been carried out appropriately and in accordance with the agreement – e.g. that certified seed has been used. UKA thereby ensures that the measures unfold in full over time, creating a valuable habitat for flora and fauna.

Various compensatory measures available

The UKA Group relies on a variety of different forms of compensation in its projects. These include carrying out planting to enhance the landscape, freeing up the ground by dismantling or demolishing buildings, and renaturation and extensification of the agricultural use through semi-natural biotopes.

In addition, we promote certain species or species groups, e.g. by creating habitats and nesting sites. If no suitable location can be found for compensatory measures, if necessary it is possible to fall back on appropriate measures with corresponding biotope values from an ‘eco-account’.

Bat roosting site in Wansleben

Bat roosting site in Wansleben

The district of Mansfeld-Südharz is home to various different species of bat. In 2014 their existing habitat was extended. An old roof truss fitted with bat boxes and boards for perching on offers a perfect roosting site for Mouse-eared bats, Brown long-eared bats and Eptesicus bats. The bats are provided with a dark space where they can rest during the day.

Renaturation of Moor Groß Luch swamp at Klein Leine

Renaturation of Moor Groß Luch swamp at Klein Leine

Swamps are valuable carbon reservoirs and filter the water that flows through them. Swamps therefore actively contribute to climate protection. The Moor Groß Luch swamp within the Lieberoser Endmoräne nature reserve was at risk of drying out. In 2015, as part of constructing the Klein Leine wind farm, the water balance was restored. The Moor Groß Luch swamp was formerly drained by means of a trench that is now filled in and closed off. To prevent the swamp drying out at its edges these were sealed with wooden posts.

Hedge at the edge of Parchim

Hedge at the edge of Parchim

In 2015, a hedge was planted at the edge of Parchim. The free-growing hedge developed into a new habitat for plants and animals. In addition it has a positive effect on the landscape around the wind farm.