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Fighting the Windpower Industrial Complex: The Eric Bibler Letter (A Grassroots Environmentalist Speaks to Power)

The unequal contest about the implementation of utility-scale wind plants between a number of ordinary citizens, on one hand, and the system of government intransigence, environmentalist narrowness, strong industry lobby groups, and uninformed public opinion, on the other, is a difficult but necessary one.

In Europe alone, which has the most experience with the wind plants, the number of such groups is approaching 450 in 21 countries. In Ontario Canada, one of the North American extremist jurisdictions in support of wind, the number is 35.

Unfortunately, compared to the wind proponent side, the relatively small number of people fighting wind plants comes from those who are faced with the reality of the prospect of wind plants in close proximity to their communities. However, others who for various reasons have done the necessary research to see past the misconceptions to the reality of the total folly of pursuing such policies have also joined them.

We must rise above the negatively intended, and unthinking, use of the term NIMBY (Not In My Backyard) that is quickly applied to these citizens’ groups. Although, initially their opposition represents self-interest (which is not automatically to be criticized), nevertheless they progress to becoming informed on the subject to properly represent their case. In doing this, they soon discover that the associated problems and worthlessness of the whole wind agenda. They find out that the Wind Crusade is hardly noble environmentalism. Many find themselves asking: why have so many self-styled environmentalists sold out to image, to form over sustance?

My view is that utility-scale wind plants are ineffective in all respects as an electricity source and should not be part of any electricity system, rendering all the other problems that come with them needless. The ‘other problems’ are the negative impact on:

  • Human health
  • Local flora and fauna
  • Local economies, including businesses and housing real estate values
  • Natural environments, so taken for granted, but important to our society
  • Relationships within communities and even families
  • Our financial systems (think in terms of the recent sub-prime fiasco)

A Letter to Real Environmentalists on Windpower

The following letter from Eric Bibler to the Cape Cod Commission about planning for industrial wind turbines is noteworthy. Bibler is an environmental activist and President of Save Our Seashore, a non-profit organization based in Wellfleet, MA, that is devoted to the principle that our National Parks, including the Cape Cod National Seashore, should be preserved and protected as a natural resource and not subjected to industrialization through the installation of wind energy.

His letter, while important on a stand-alone basis, is representative of the bureaucratic impenetrability that surrounds policy planning for wind plants. It has been slightly edited by him from the original for typos, proper punctuation, grammar and clarity.

Note to readers: This space is much too small to encompass all the information that supports this aspect of the fight. Please help by making brief comments with links to your sites or others that you would recommend.

11/10/10 Letter to the Cape Code Commission by Eric Bibler (Save Our Seashore, Wellfleet, MA)

Ms. Ryan Christenberry, Planner – Energy Policy, Cape Cod Commission, 3225 Main Street, Barnstable, MA 02630
Ms. Christenberry,
…. Let me make sure that I understand what the Cape Cod Commission proposes to do with respect to industrial wind turbines.
My understanding is that the Planners (including you) and the Executive Director of the Cape Cod Commission, Mr. Paul Niedzwiecki, have proposed, and/or endorsed, new language for “Minimum Performance Standards” for “Wind Energy Conversion Facilities” – large industrial, open-air wind factories — that will be inserted into the Regional Policy Plan under the section on Energy Policy.  This action requires the approval of both the Cape Cod Commission Members and the Barnstable County Commission Assembly of Delegates.
The Commission Members have approved the language – on your recommendation – and the CCC will now seek the approval of the Assembly of Delegates at their next meeting on November 17th.  Although the language of the “Minimum Performance Standards” for which you seek approval repeatedly states that “Guidance can be found in Technical Bulletin 10-002,” the fact of the matter is that no such “guidance” can currently be sought by anyone because the “Technical Bulletin 10-002” hasn’t been written yet.
That is where things stand now.
You maintain in your note to me below [not included] that the CCC will need to hire the services of an acoustic expert in order to write the provisions of the Technical Bulletin.  Presumably, you are referring to those provisions of the Technical Bulletin which refer to noise from wind turbines.  The need for special expertise just such as this is why the Technical Bulletins come after approval of the Minimum Performance Standards.
But it is unclear to me why the Cape Cod Commission needs “Minimum Performance Standards” in the first place.  And it is particularly perplexing to me why, if it is necessary for some reason, to have some “Minimum Performance Standards” in place, you should have made the wording so vague, or so ludicrously easy to meet, that they essentially have no meaning (see copy attached from your website) [not included]. What purpose does that serve?
For example, under the heading of “Noise,” your “Standard” requires nothing more than “a noise study” (which may be reviewed by CCC) and a commitment “to adequately mitigate adverse impacts to residential uses outside the applicant’s development site.”  But surely you must realize – especially because of your close connection to the situation in Falmouth — that there is no way to “mitigate” the noise from industrial wind turbines – other than to shut them down.
Under the heading of “Shadow Flicker” – a reference to the intense strobe-like effect produced by the huge blades and the 300 foot rotor width of industrial wind turbines — you say only that the developer “must demonstrate there are no adverse Shadow Flicker impacts to neighboring or adjacent residential uses.”  But surely you must realize, if you have even a modest knowledge of industrial wind turbines, that, as sure as the sun rises and sets, there WILL be unsettling strobe-like effects over a very broad area.  And I’m sure that you must also know that effects that appear “inconsequential” to developers are often deeply disturbing, and even intolerable, to residents.  So what is the practical effect of stipulating that there be “no adverse impacts” – a term which whose definition is once again fluid and subjective?   And how does this qualify as a “standard”?
But by far the most alarming of the proposed “Minimum Performance Standards” that you have recommended – and which the Members have now approved upon your recommendation and with the full endorsement of Mr. Niedzwiecki – is the revised “setback” provision for wind turbines under the heading of “Safety.”
The new language relating to minimum setbacks was offered as a replacement to the former language that was previously accepted by two committees of the Cape Cod Commission, the Regulatory Committee and the Planning Committee.
Here is the former language which will be replaced if the Assembly of Delegates agrees to your request:
Minimum Performance Standard 2 – Noise
All WECF’s equal to or greater than 1 MW shall maintain a setback of 3,000 feet from the nearest residential structure, unless the applicant can demonstrate through a noise study there are no adverse impacts to its residents. Guidance on noise study components can be found in Technical Bulletin #10-002 [note: to be adopted].”
Many researchers have argued strenuously that a setback provision of 3000 feet is less than half of what is required to avoid adverse health impacts to residents.
This new language reads as follows:
E1.7    Safety
All Wind Energy Conversion Facilities (WECFs) shall maintain a clear area of 1.5 times the tip height from the base of the WECF to any structure outside the applicant’s development site. Applicants may negotiate a reduced setback with the abutting property owner(s) provided that the reduction would not pose a threat to life or property and provided a waiver is obtained in a form that is recordable in the Barnstable County Registry of Deeds if the DRI is approved.  Any waiver shall reserve rights to tort and nuisance claims. A schedule of operation, maintenance and decommissioning procedures shall be provided with the application and shall be made part of any decision.  Guidance can be found in Technical Bulletin 10-002.
To translate this into real terms, this “Standard” would allow a 400 foot wind turbine to be installed within 600 feet of the nearest structure – potentially right on the boundary line of an abutter’s property – and would allow a 500 foot wind turbine (of the type proposed for Bourne, where New Generation Wind wants to install SIX of them) to be within a mere 750 feet of the nearest structure.  In other words, for a large wind turbine – a 500 foot behemoth – the new setback provision is less than one-fourth of the old one, and less than one-eighth of the setback provision that is consistent with “mitigating” serious harm from wind turbine noise.
Once again, the emphasis seems to be on making this provision “minimal” – virtually to the vanishing point – rather than on prescribing a credible “standard.”
Such a “standard” is so grossly negligent, and so irresponsible, that it is extremely disconcerting to contemplate the reasons why the professional Planners and the Executive Director of the Cape Cod Commission can have possibly proposed it.  Their endorsement raises some very serious questions for Commission Members, for Delegates and for Cape Cod residents who rely on the impartial and professional judgment of the CCC and upon its leadership in matters of development.
Are you really so uninformed that you think that installing these huge mechanical devices in such dangerously close proximity to residences can ever be justified?
Or, perhaps worse, do you actually understand the magnitude of the harm – but feel that the industrialization of Cape Cod through wind energy is such a high social priority that you have no compunction about sacrificing any unfortunate innocents who happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time (which is to say, living near a wind turbine)?
Neither answer is very comforting.
When we heard the news that the Cape Cod Commission had recommended a minimum setback for industrial wind turbines of only 1.5x tip height – perhaps the most lenient setback provision in the country or the world – we were astonished.  What reasons could the CCC possibly have for adopting such a radical provision – especially in light of the volumes of technical, scientific and painful anecdotal information on this topic that had been systematically provided to the Executive Director over the course of the past year?
Perhaps the official Minutes of the August 19th Meeting of the CCC, where the management proposed the new “Standards,” can shed some light on this.
In introducing the topic, according to the minutes, Ms. Christenberry notes that “the standards are intended to balance the desire for wind development in our communities while protecting the sensitive resources in our region.”
As we have seen above, however, it is not clear precisely what portion of the proposed “standards” actually provides any protection, whatsoever, for residents.
Similarly, one might search in vain for any provisions intended to “preserve the unique character of Cape Cod,” its “historical character,” its “unique charm” and its “special sense of place.”  And many of us remain at a loss to understand how the installation of dozens of 500-foot industrial wind turbines, with blades spinning at up to 180 mph, towering over the landscape and emitting noise of over 105 dB at their hubs, can be consistent with the official Development Guidelines of the Commission which stipulate that new development should be “sensitive to the local environment,” neither “out-of-character” nor “out-of-scale” with the rural surroundings of the Cape.
If the overriding concern of the Cape Cod Commission is truly “to balance” these elements, something already seems seriously out-of-whack.
Are they not 500 feet tall?  Are they not industrial?  Are they not mechanical?  Are they not noisy and unnatural?  Yes.
Are they historical?  Or rural?  Or compatible in any way with their surroundings?  No.
So where does “the balance” enter into the equation?  Or, somewhere along the line, did the desire for virtually unrestrained industrialization supersede the charter of the Cape Cod Commission, whose express purpose was to create a vehicle to restrain such irresponsible and incompatible development?
The comments of the various participants in the meeting of August 19th – particularly the comments of the wind turbine proponents, including the management of the Cape Cod Commission – are revealing.  Here are some highlights:
  • In response to a question as to why CCC planners were recommending that the proposed setback provision be sharply reduced from 3000 feet to “1.5 times the tip height from the nearest structure,” Ms. Christenberry replied that “it was felt that projects couldn’t make that threshold.”
  • Executive Director Paul Niedzweicki said that “people were skittish about the 3000-foot setback so the number was removed.”  He then offered the startling opinion that reducing this setback provision (to a mere 600 feet, for a 400 foot wind turbine), and inserting broad language on noise and flicker, “actually puts more of a burden on the developer.”  He said that “the Commission is satisfied to get these suggested standards on the books” — and work out the details later.
  • Mr. John Harris called attention to the fact that a recent UMass study shows that adverse noise impacts “go farther than it appears.”  Mr. Harris than asked who adjudicates such complaints because “we may never get out of the loop if people keep posing noise complaints.”
  • Mr. Niedzwiecki replied that “the fastest way to get renewable energy going is in a regulated environment and he hopes that that is where this will take us.”  He said that “the Commission will fill in the blanks as we move along.”
  • Roger Putnam, the Member from Wellfleet – and a man of some experience with industrial wind turbines since his own Board of Selectmen initially voted unanimously in favor of installing them, and then, after doing their homework, voted unanimously to abandon them – gamely stated that “he doesn’t believe [the Commission Members] have enough information to make an intelligent decision.”
  • Mr. Niedzwiecki replied that “these standards will help towns [move forward with these projects] and he sees that as the most useful thing with these standards.
  • Richard Elrick — an energy coordinator from Bourne who is working with New Generation Wind to install SEVEN 500-foot wind turbines there — said that “regarding noise, it’s getting more and more challenging to site wind turbines. He said to have a 3000 foot setback would mean that we wouldn’t be able to site wind turbines on the Cape. He said every turbine is different and every location is different….He said that being more specific about noise would make it easier for developers   He said the language for Shadow Flicker is limited and he would recommend adding ‘significant’ to no adverse shadow flicker.  He said it would give it more clarity.  He said we are not going to get renewable energy projects if we make it harder for developers to get there.”
  • Liz Argo, a renewable energy consultant allied with CVEC, the co-founder of the unabashedly pro-wind energy Cape and Islands Wind Energy Network, said she “would be happy to help with the development of the Technical Bulletin.”  No doubt. The Chair asked Ms. Argo if she had attended Planning Committee meetings and she said, yes, she had.
  • Mr. Niedzwiecki “referred to Mr. Elrick’s comment regarding adverse impacts and said he would suggest that the language say “no adverse impacts” or “no significant impacts.”  He said “the Commission does not support a 3000 foot setback and that the Commission decided to remove it.”  He said this “does put more of a burden on the developer.”
  • Ms. Christenberry referred to the new setback provision of 1.5x tip height and said “that is an industry standard.”
  • Chair Roy Richardson asked if there was “any reason to believe that they shouldn’t feel comfortable with the decision made by the Planning Committee.”  No such doubts were voiced by CCC management.
  • Ms. Christenberry said that “having these standards would help bring transparency to the process.”
  • There being no issues of significant concern worthy of any further discussion, in the opinion of senior management, a motion to adopt the changes proposed by them was moved, seconded and passed.

Can there be any doubt from reading the transcript of this meeting that the overriding motivation for reducing the setback provision – as was repeatedly and explicitly stated by numerous parties – was that this provision was getting in the way of development; that it was preventing the installation of the massive towers, and thwarting the ambitions of the developers, for the simple reason that it is virtually impossible to find any sites that do not have residences located within such a perimeter?

As we’ve seen, the management and the planners of the Commission, the developers, their representatives and the vested interests, all expressed the need to water down or remove the restrictions to development that “made them skittish” or “we wouldn’t be able to site wind turbines on the Cape.”

Did ONE person on the Commission mention the possibility that such development might not be consistent with the preservationist principles of the Cape Cod Commission; or in the best interests of the Cape as a region – a place that has thrived by zealously guarding its “unique character” against such onslaughts?

Did ONE person mention any concern for the health and well-being of Cape Cod’s residents?  (And, to be clear, citing “noise complaints” – another niggling impediment to development – doesn’t count as it is not even remotely the same thing).

Did ONE person ask for any of the proponents to EXPLAIN what societal benefit would accrue to the residents of the Cape – since the sacrifices are so painfully obvious?  After all, it is hard to ignore a vast array of 500 foot wind turbines, or the chronic noise that they emit.  What is that benefit?   Could someone please articulate it?

Have ANY of the developers – or the management of the Cape Cod Commission – ever calculated, quantified or publicly provided and verified the amount of green house gas emissions that will allegedly be reduced by allowing the intrusion of these monstrous structures in town, after town, after town?

The developers, and other vested interests, participated in shaping the model wind turbine bylaws in 2004 and have haunted the Commission like harpies ever since, goading them relentlessly into adopting more and more lenient, prescriptive provisions for the construction of their developments. But have they ever actually had to MAKE THEIR CASE as to the benefits of their program?

Do ALL of the Members – and the management of the Cape Cod Commission – really believe that there will be NO significant consequences from erecting one enormous structure after another – or one cluster after another – of 500 foot kinetic towers?  Do they really believe this, even after witnessing the agony and the suffering of citizens in nearby Falmouth?

Has ANY member of the CCC management ever acknowledged – ever – that the enormous scale of these structures is even an issue?  Or that caution ought to be exercised in performing a close study of potential hazards from such a dramatic, wholesale industrialization up and down the Cape?

Have ANY of the Members experienced  even a MOMENT OF DOUBT as to whether this whole program – which has been so uncritically embraced as an end unto itself – is truly in the best interests of the region, the individual towns and the residents of the Cape?

Did ONE person – other than Mr. Putnam from Wellfleet – dare to suggest that the Members might not want to give the Commission – and the developers it so ardently supports – a BLANK CHECK to regulate – or fail to regulate – such development – particularly in view of their gross incompetence on this issue to date?

Has it occurred to any of the Members – or to any member of the Commission management – that the critics of these plans are the ones who are actually FREE from conflict of interest; who have studied these issues closely; and who have documented these concerns to the Cape Cod Commission – only to be summarily rebuffed; and that is the critics of this unbridled industrial policy who are, in fact, struggling to ensure that the long-term best interests of both the region, and their fellow citizens, are preserved?

Where is the evidence of the “balance,” Ms. Christenberry, to which the Cape Cod Commission – particularly under its current leadership – so often pays lip service but so rarely seeks to do anything to preserve?

Has the Cape Cod Commission become so corrupted by the mania for wind power that the Executive Director, and the Planners, accompanied on the floor of a Commission meeting by a bevy of developers, lobbyists and consultants, no longer feels any shame in declaring, quite matter-of-factly, that the Commission needs to eliminate and/or weaken the modest handful of restrictions to industrial wind energy – which already amounted to no more than a fig leaf of protection – because, if they don’t, no projects will get built?

Who are the real “constituents” of the Cape Cod Commission and the member towns?

Aren’t your constituents really the people who have joined those communities; who have purchased homes there; or who visit habitually, year after year, because they have – or had — faith that this community shares their interest in protecting and preserving the “unique character” and “special charm” of this fragile, but resilient, and hauntingly beautiful, region?

Why are you so willing to abuse them, and all that they love about the Cape, to serve the interests of a handful of rich developers, or unabashedly opportunistic towns, who seek nothing more than to profit from the temporary gusher of state and federal subsidies driving the wind energy mania?

Those towers are huge and they will be permanent.  And they will profoundly alter life as we know it on Cape Cod.  They will disproportionately benefit a small handful of investors, and they will create agony for thousands of innocents who did nothing to deserve such treatment – and who had every right to expect that the Cape Cod Commission – the protector of the Cape — would never allow such an outrage.

What justification do you have for offering up these sacrificial lambs on the altar of industrial wind energy?  What will you say when you attempt to explain why you allowed it?

Why are these points lost on you?  Why do you not understand that your urgent priority of installing industrial wind plants on Cape Cod can never be accomplished without incalculable sacrifice?  And that the return on our collective investment – both in terms of the amount of energy produced and the reduction (if any) in green house gas emissions is truly pitiful.

The Cape Cod Commission has become so corrupted in its thinking that it now serves an entirely different master than the one that was prescribed for it when it was invented.  It no longer serves the region’s interest, or the people’s

Instead, the Cape Cod Commission today is the unapologetic servant of a political agenda and the chief enabler for a handful of opportunistic developers who are insensitive to the true needs of the community and who seek to profit from the lavish subsidies that keep this misguided industrial plan from collapsing under its own weight – at least for the time being. interest, by advocating development that is sensitive to the local environment and which keeps the soul of the place – its most precious asset – intact.

That will be someone else’s problem, too – the problem of who actually comes back to pick up the pieces when this bubble bursts.  I imagine that this is another issue to be worked out in some future Technical Bulletin, not to worry.  The important thing for now is to make sure that they all get built.  There is plenty of time to worry about the rest later.

Sincerely,

(signed) Eric Bibler, President

7 comments

1 Craig Goodrich { 11.16.10 at 5:43 am }

A fine letter. What has been astounding to me, a confirmed cynic, is how easily local “environmental” board are bought off, and how easily the total futility of wind power has been concealed from the public.

When this monstrous fraud finally collapses here — as it is doing in Europe — a large number of people, contemplating their ruined countryside and devastated wilderness, will long to find a wind developer to lynch. But they will, of course, be long gone. To someplace untouched by the monstrosities.

2 Jon Boone { 11.16.10 at 12:19 pm }

Agreed, Mr. Goodrich. Those who promote wind’s confidence scheme, which privatizes profit and socializes risk, which promises a great deal and delivers dysfunction at many different levels, which demands opacity and relies on gullibility, should be prosecuted for bunco, and their booty confiscated to dismantle these totems of massive ignorance and greed.

3 Maureen Anderson { 11.16.10 at 6:36 pm }

Here in Ontario: “…CanWEA submits that the proposed requirement for infrasound or low frequency noise monitoring as a condition of the REA [Renewable Energy Approval] be removed.”

What do they have to be afraid of if their product is so safe? Is this simply willful and premeditated harm to human beings including children?

4 Neil Good { 11.18.10 at 6:30 pm }

For most people, their support for wind turbine power is inversely proprotional to their understanding of science and engineering. In other words, the less they know about the realities of the ‘mechanical’ world, the more they are fooled into thinking capturing the fickle wind is a great way to generate energy.

5 Big Picture { 02.18.11 at 11:47 am }

What a bunch of mis-guided baloney. NIMBY at it’s best. Mr. Bibler is not even a resident of the Cape so go make a stink somewhere else please!

6 Eric Bibler { 02.19.11 at 1:30 am }

Dear Big Picture,

I’m not sure I follow your logic. If it’s none of my business what happens on Cape Cod — because I’m not a resident there — how can I be a NIMBY?

And why is it none of my business what happens on the Cape when a substantial portion of it — including 61% of the town of Wellfleet, which first attracted my interest — lies within the Cape Cod National Seashore?

Doesn’t the charter of the Cape Cod Commission specifically provide that one of its primary purposes is to regulate development on Cape Cod in such a way as to preserve its rural and historic character?

Don’t the design guidelines of the Commission specifically discourage development that is “out-of-scale” and “out-of-character” with the surrounding landscape? How do 400 and 500 foot industrial wind turbines observe these restrictions when the average tree height on the Cape is approximately 40 feet?

A substantial portion of the economy on Cape Cod — the majority — is still tied to the annual influx of seasonal residents and to tourism which swell the population in the summer to some multiple of the number of winter residents. Do you really believe that it is irrelevant that these people are attracted to Cape Cod and to the National Seashore — a national treasure — precisely because of the determined efforts to preserve precisely the same values that the Cape Cod Commission embraces in its charter?

I have family in Wellfleet — a town that abandoned its wind turbine proposal almost a year ago when the Wellfleet Board of Selectmen reversed its position and killed the project by unanimous vote. There is no longer any threat of wind turbines in that Town, so I am no longer even a NIMBY once-removed.

Along the way, during the debate in Wellfleet, the head of the Wellfleet Energy Committee (WEC) resigned, saying he could not support the project because of the adverse impacts.

Another of the chief proponents, also a member of the WEC, who had written all of the grant proposals for preliminary work dating back to 2004, stated publicly — on three occasions — that he was “wrong;” that the adverse impacts were far worse than he had believed; and that “Wellfleet is no place for a wind turbine.”

All of the selectmen and energy committee members above live in Wellfleet and were instrumental in bringing the proposal to life in the first place.

Are they full of baloney, too? Or were they all bamboozled by the NIMBY’s and their accomplices — despite having spent hundreds of man hours studying the ramifications of their own proposal and making the painful, but necessary decision to go before the Town, admit error, and urge that the wind turbine proposal be abandoned?

Now it seems that I owe apologies — or at the very least, congratulations and my own admission of error — to both Ms. Christenberry and Mr. Niedzwiecki of the Cape Cod Commission — and to all of the Members of the Cape Cod Commission, as well — for it appears that I misjudged them all in writing this article.

Yesterday, after receiving thousands of pages of written material and hearing public testimony from scores of citizens on Cape Cod — and after numerous Joint Planning and Regulatory Committee meetings devoted to this issue — the Cape Cod Commission approved, by a vote of 8-1, new, much more stringent, Minimum Performance Standards to regulate the installation of wind turbines anywhere on Cape Cod. The lone dissenter was Mr. Roger Putnam, the representative from Wellfleet — God bless his heart — who opposed the new MPS because he thought that they were still far too lenient (and he’s right).

Ms. Christenberry and Mr. Niedzwiecki were instrumental in drafting, and gaining acceptance for, a set of standards which provided some meaningful thresholds to trigger additional review by the Commission and in promoting the idea of vesting such authority in a regional planning organization (the Commission) that is free of any conflict of interest arising from prospective monetary gain (as with the myriad municipally owned projects) and which possesses the requisite expertise and resources to perform a proper evaluation. Kudos to Ms. Christenberry and Mr. Niedzwiecki.

For a number of reasons, including:

a) that the Minimum Performance Standards serve only as an initial screen that triggers full Commission review under an established procedure for “Developments of Regional Impact” (DRI);

b) that the Commission will next undertake to develop a detailed Technical Bulletin that will address many complex technical issues, and restrictions, in detail; and

c) that the new procedure will, at long last, force any Applicant (the developers) to adopt their proper burden of proof in demonstrating an absence of harm from their projects;

Save Our Seashore yesterday gave its qualified support to the Commission for the new MPS.

My apologies to Ms. Christenberry and Mr. Niedzwiecki. I misjudged you both.

Eric Bibler
Save Our Seashore
—————————————

7 Karen Pease { 03.03.11 at 9:16 pm }

Thank you for this heartfelt and insightful article.

As I sat here reading it, I turned to my husband and said, “I simply can’t believe this. We have hundred– HUNDREDS– of informed, factual, dedicated citizens’ activist groups all around the world, and STILL– the wind industry has the upper hand! What is wrong with this picture???”

Steven is accustomed to my outbursts in regards to industrial wind, but that’s because I simply have never encountered such a well-seated corporate interest getting ‘its way’ despite massive resistance… and despite being completely and totally in the wrong.

Industrial wind is a scam. I’ve aways hated that word, ‘scam’…I associated it with radicals–with folks who used inciteful rhetoric to create a frenzy–rather than a word employed by reasonable, respectable people with a factual and important story to tell.

But the facts tell the true story. The paltry benefits of grid-scale industrial wind turbine plants are far, far outweighed by the colossal negative impacts. Economic impacts, environmental ones, impacts to our health, ‘quality of place’, ‘quality of life’….the list is long. Science and economics should be what determine our energy policies, and yet… it is the corporate lobby and the government agencies which cater to it which are determining our future.

That’s wrong.

Is this still America? Do the people still have the right to ‘have a say’?

Yes. We do. And I thank you, sir, for exercising that right. Please don’t stop. We need a groundswell of people just like you, doing the same thing. And eventually, we’ll bring common sense back to the table.

I only hope we can do it quickly enough to save some of America’s most pristine places from the intrusion of an undependable, intermittent, useless energy producer which is far too expensive to justify its existence, and which would not exist without huge tax-payer subsidies.

Respectfully,
Kaz Pease
Lexington Twp., Maine

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