Endangered Species
Midwest Region



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Midwest Wind Habitat Conservation Plan



Photo by National Renewable Energy Lab


To meet the growing demand for rapid approval of wind energy plants, yet ensure conservation of federally-listed species, the Service and a coalition of eight states, The Conservation Fund, and representatives of the wind energy industry are preparing a Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan. This is an incidental take permitting program for federally listed species that may be impacted by existing and future wind energy projects in the Midwest Region.


Planning for the Multi-species HCP began in 2009 and the planning partners received a $3.3 million HCP Planning Assistance grant (PDF) in 2010.


Notice of Intent to Prepare a Multi-species HCP (published Aug. 30, 2012 - comment period closed Dec. 3, 2012)

The Service published a Notice of Intent to prepare a Midwest Wind Multi-species Habitat Conservation Plan in the August 30, 2012 Federal Register.  The Notice of Intent let interested parties and the public know that we, in cooperation with our planning partners, are preparing this Multi-species HCP, and we would like to receive their input, suggestions and information at this stage in the planning process.  The Notice of Intent opened a 30-day public comment period that closed on October 1, 2012. However, a Federal Register Notice published on Oct. 3, 2012 extend the comment period to Dec. 3, 2012.


The Multi-species HCP will cover participating wind energy facilities in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin.


Public Comments Received on Notice of Intent


Comment Period Reopened and Extended to Dec. 3, 2012

News Release (Oct. 3, 2012): Comment Period Reopened for Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan for Midwest Wind Energy Facilities


Federal Register Notice (Oct. 3, 2012): Reopening of public comment period (2-page PDF)


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Federal Register Notice of Intent (August 30, 2012): Midwest Wind Energy Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan Within Eight-State Planning Area (2-page PDF)


News Release (Aug. 29, 2012): U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Seeks Public Input to Conserve Endangered Species in the Midwest While Encouraging Clean Energy


Questions and Answers: Midwest Wind Energy Habitat Conservation Plan in Eight States



Wind, Bats, and Birds - - Region-wide HCP for Wind Energy Projects (2010 Article)


2010 Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance Grant to Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri and Ohio

Development of a Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan for Wind Energy Development in the Midwest: $3,362,364.  Grant Proposal (72-page PDF; 2MB) - - The natural resource agencies within Region 3 will develop a landscape-level, multi-species Habitat Conservation Plan throughout the eight states to provide conservation benefits to listed species, while accommodating wind development.  The plan will provide a means for wind energy developers to avoid, minimize, mitigate and compensate for adverse effects to covered species.  As a part of the Habitat Conservation Plan, the five states will work in collaboration with the remaining Region 3 states (Minnesota, Illinois and Wisconsin), the wind industry, and The Conservation Fund to lead a strategic conservation planning process that focuses on integrating species needs with potential habitat mitigation across the landscape.


Species that may be included

Federally-listed Species

Gray bat (Myotis grisescens) - Endangered


Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) - Endangered


Kirtland’s warbler (Setophaga kirtlandii) - Endangered


Piping plover - Great Lakes Population (Charadrius melodus) - Threatened and Endangered


Least tern - Interior Population (Sternula antillarum athalassos) - Endangered


Species that may become Federally-listed

Little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus)


Northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis)


Federally-protected Species

Bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)


About Habitat Conservation Plans

Frequently Asked Questions about HCPs


Fact Sheet - Habitat Conservation Plans: Section 10 of the Endangered Species Act


Habitat Conservation Plans

Midwest Endangered Species


Last updated: April 14, 2015