Boosting biodiversity on land

We support biodiversity initiatives in environments where we build and operate onshore renewable energy projects, such as wind and solar farms, bringing together environmental organisations, local communities, research institutions, and the energy industry in taking action on the twin crises of biodiversity loss and climate change. 

Restoring native tallgrass prairies in Kansas, US 

The Flint Hills region of eastern Kansas in the US is home to two-thirds of the world’s remaining tallgrass prairie. We have donated more than USD 2 million to the Conservation Fund and The Nature Conservancy to conserve and restore up to 3,000 acres of tallgrass prairie around our Sunflower Wind Farm. 

The rolling green landscape of Kansas’s tallgrass prairie ecosystem

Habitat protection 

An array of diverse wildlife lives in the Flint Hills, including greater prairie chickens, upland sandpipers, and pronghorns, America’s fastest land animal. By conserving this area, we can help maintain crucial prairie habitat for these unique species. 

Restoration activities 

The Nature Conservancy will undertake crucial restoration activities to maintain the ecological balance of the Flint Hills prairies. These activities include prescribed burns, removing invasive species, grazing management, wildlife support, and scientific assessments.

Reviving native plants 

Kansas’ tallgrass prairies are fertile ground for hundreds of native plants, including switchgrass and bluestem. Thanks to conservation easements that protect prairie habitat, Ørsted can help protect native plant communities around our Sunflower Wind Farm. 

Protecting native tallgrass prairies in Texas, US 

Prairies are some of the hardest-working ecosystems on the planet, serving people and animals alike by filtering water and storing carbon. That’s why we’ve taken steps to preserve almost 1,000 acres of the tallgrass prairie that grows around our Mockingbird solar farm in Texas, US. In collaboration with The Nature Conservancy, we’re preserving over 50% of the Smiley-Woodfin Native Prairie Grassland, the largest continuous stretch of this rare tallgrass in the United States.  

Yellow, red, and purple flowers in Texas’s tallgrass prairie ecosystem

Carbon storage

Prairie soil naturally captures and stores up to five tonnes of carbon per acre, playing an important role in regulating Earth’s atmosphere. By preserving prairies, we’re addressing both biodiversity loss and climate change.  

Flood prevention

Prairies can absorb large quantities of rainwater, thanks to their deep root system. This helps to reduce flooding, making healthy prairies a key tool for protecting local wildlife and communities during heavy rainfall.  

Boosting pollination

Native prairies are a major habitat for pollinating species, including bees, monarch butterflies, and birds. By setting aside areas for tallgrass, we can boost the biodiversity and ecological health of Texas’ ecosystems.   

Restoring natural wetlands with the Playa Lakes Joint Venture 

Playas are natural wetlands that collect rainwater and create temporary lakes. They sustain a diverse range of native animals and vegetation, and supply local communities with water. We’re restoring 500 acres of this freshwater ecosystem, keeping it healthy, functional, and resilient. Together with the Playa Lakes Joint Venture, we’re restoring several playas near our wind farms in Texas, US.  

A flock of birds flying over water and vegetation in the Playa Lakes wetland ecosystem in Texas

Wildlife support 

Birds, amphibians, and mammals all depend on playas for freshwater – particularly migrating birds, which use playa lakes as key stopover points. By conserving playas, we can help hundreds of native species thrive. 

Replenishing aquifers

Playas are a primary source of freshwater in arid areas because they collect and filter rainwater and runoff. For local communities, restoring playa lakes will help refill aquifers, boosting clean drinking water availability in the region. 

Restoring nature

By restoring these wetlands, we’re increasing the healthy playas needed to make the High Plains region more resilient to a changing climate.

Identifying owl habitats with Arizona State University  

How can burrowing owls coexist with solar panels? This is the question students at Arizona State University have set out to answer. Funded by an Ørsted grant, future biologists, ecologists, and data analysts will identify areas in Arizona with high-priority owl habitats, and look into restoration opportunities. Students will seek solutions for relocating displaced owls and help energy companies understand how to construct solar farms responsibly alongside owl habitats.  

Two burrowing owls standing in the entrance of their earth burrow in Arizona

Species protection

The population of burrowing owls has fallen considerably over the last century. By translocating owls to safe, preserved habitats, we can help protect and revitalise this unique species of burrowing bird. 

Habitat preservation

By mapping populations of burrowing owls in Arizona, the project will allow energy companies to mitigate any impacts on burrowing owl habitat when building and operating solar projects. 

Combining solutions

We believe that issues facing the climate, biodiversity, and local communities cannot be separated. This project brings together green energy and biodiversity restoration with involvement from local people.

Explore some of our biodiversity projects and partnerships 

Fish in the ocean

Partnering with WWF for ocean biodiversity 

Together with WWF, we’re exploring ways to protect and restore biodiversity in offshore wind development 
Group seagrass planting

Restoring biodiversity around the Humber Estuary

We’re partnering with the Lincolnshire and Yorkshire Wildlife Trusts to restore multiple habitats at one of the UK’s most important conservation sites  
Visual simulation of coral growing on wind turbine foundations

ReCoral: Supporting coral reefs

We’re attempting to settle and grow coral larvae on our offshore wind turbine foundations
3D printed reef going into the sea

Restoring biodiversity in the Kattegat 

We’re collaborating with WWF Denmark to explore how 3D-printed reefs can benefit biodiversity