General Motors was recently recognized by the Detroit Audubon Society for the automaker’s involvement and assistance with saving the lives of birds in the Detroit area.
As it stands, many bird species migrate at night and use the stars to navigate, but can’t always fly around large buildings such as skyscrapers; they’re also sometimes distracted by the lights left on in the buildings at night, leading to collisions with the building, or becoming disoriented and circling around until they die of exhaustion. And all that doesn’t happen in small numbers, either: the U.S. Forest Service estimates that as many as half a billion birds die each year due to collisions with buildings, and GM’s humongous Renaissance Center headquarters is located directly in the migratory path of many birds, posing a real problem.
Thankfully, the kind people who work in the Renaissance Center have been keeping their lights off during the night as much as possible in order to keep the birds from flying into the windows… while employees don’t want to encourage Spiderman to do any smash-n-grabs.
The automaker has participated in the Safe Passage Great Lakes program for seven years, and manages nearly 2,500 acres of wildlife habitats across the globe, including:
- Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, which converted 16.5 acres of lawn area into a habitat for migratory birds that prefer grassland.
- GM China launched the first phase of the GM Restoring Nature’s Habitat Project, a three-year initiative that will provide water for and support the breeding of rare and migratory birds at three wetlands in China, the Chongming Dongtan National Nature Reserve in Shanghai, the Panjin Shuangtai Hekou National Nature Reserve in Liaoning province and the Changdao National Nature Reserve in Shandong province.
Birds’ migrations take place during the spring and fall, from March through May, and from August through October.
The GM Authority Take
Good on The General for doing this. We expect to see all the Ren Cen windows dark at night… or at least with the blinds shut.