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Optimal design and routing of power lines; ecological technical and economic perspectives (OPTIPOL). Final Report, findings 2009 – 2014


OPTIPOL was designed by NINA in early 2008, with a particular focus on power lines and wildlife interactions. As soon as CEDREN was approved as a CEER, OPTIPOL became an integrated part of the centre. The overall objectives of OPTIPOL have been to contribute to an environmental friendly future development of the grid by developing predicting tools for optimal routing of power lines, and assess technical and economic solutions to minimize conflicts with wildlife and habitat conservation. It has been a project focusing on applied research topics, and several user groups (energy industry, environmental and energy management authorities) have been closely involved during the project period, both formally and informally. The project activities have been reported through four annual reports, and the content in the present report is restricted to give an overview of the work package activities and summarize their findings.
The work in OPTIPOL has been subdivided into the following focal areas and work packages:
 WP1. Power line ROW as habitat resources for moose (Alces alces) and other wildlife, with an objective to assess how and why different wildlife species use deforested areas below power lines and evaluate possible positive and negative effects of power line ROW´s. The target species has been moose (Alces alces).
 WP2. Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus) and black grouse (Tetrao tetrix) population re-sponses to power-line induced mortality, with an objective to assess population impact of bird mortality due to collisions with power lines, relative to other human-related mortality fac-tors (primarily hunting) in gallinaceous birds (with capercaillie and black grouse as model species).
 WP3. Bird collision hot spots, with an objective to analyse old and new data on bird colli-sions with power lines to see how the collisions are distributed, i.e. if the collisions are dis-tributed randomly or if there are “hot-spots” with particularly many collisions. Using GIS mod-elling the aim is to identify possible ecological high-risk factors for bird collisions, i.e. site-specific factors connected to topographic characteristics, including vegetation structure, sea-son, weather and light conditions.
 WP4. National database for reporting on dead birds, with an objective to develop and implement a SQL-server spatial database for storing and retrieval of dead-bird data.
 WP5. A Least Cost Path (LCP) toolbox for scoping and optimal routing of power lines, with an objective to develop a LCP-desktop GIS toolbox for optimal routing of transmission lines based on social, ecological, economic and technological criteria.birds are colliding
 WP6. Power-line camouflaging, with an objective to assess, based on available literature, the possibilities for increased collision hazard to birds by making the power line structures less visible to humans, and if the technical solutions may reduce the security for a safe energy supply.
 WP7. Mitigating effect of power-line marking and modifications, with an objective to re-view available literature on technical modifying solutions and assess their effectiveness to mitigate bird collisions and electrocution, and if the technical solutions may reduce the secu-rity for a safe energy supply.
 WP8. Guidelines for technical solutions to mitigate power-line induced mortality to birds, and if the technical solutions may reduce the security for a safe energy supply. WP6, 7 and 8 is closely connected, and has been reported in separate reports (see Bevanger & Refsnæs 2013 a, b and references therein).
 WP9. Eagle owl population impact of power-line induced mortality, with an objective to assess eagle owl mortality and population impact due to utility structures, identify high-hazard electrocution structures, and test effectiveness of design modifications of these.
Bird, mortality, collision, vision, eye, corrosion, transmission capacity, colour coating, Fugl, dødelighet, kollisjon




  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / CEDREN
  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 193818




  • Kjetil Modolv Bevanger
  • Gundula Bartzke
  • Henrik Brøseth
  • Espen Lie Dahl
  • Jan Ove Gjershaug
  • Frank Ole Hanssen
  • Karl-Otto Jacobsen
  • Oddmund Kleven
  • Pål Kvaløy
  • Roelof Frans May
  • Torgeir Nygård
  • Steinar Refsnæs
  • Sigbjørn Stokke
  • Jørn Thomassen
  • Roger Meås


  • Norwegian Institute for Nature Research




Norsk institutt for naturforskning





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