A Free-Market Energy Blog

Industrial Wind vs. Rural America, Electricity Markets

By Mary Kay Barton -- August 12, 2015

“If you have no conscience, no morals, no aesthetic sensibility, no understanding of free markets; if you hate wildlife, people and the natural landscape, if you loathe private property… then the … wind industry is undoubtedly the place for you…. Only the Taliban at Bamiyan or ISIS at Palmyra can really come close to matching the wind industry’s scorched-earth zeal…”

~ James Delingpole, “The SNP Has Done For Scotland’s Landscape What ISIS Have Done To Palmyra,” July 23, 2015.

The destruction of rural America is ongoing, thanks to all who continue to push industrial wind energy as a fantasy-cure for ‘Climate Change.’  Trillions of dollars have been spent on ‘renewables’ worldwide, yet CO2 has NOT been significantly reduced, while rural America is paying the ultimate price. Our countrysides, wildlife, and Constitutional private property rights are being sacrificed on the altar of ‘green’ energy for NO net benefit.

U.S. taxpayers and ratepayers need to awaken to the environmentally-destructive, wealth-transfer and corporate land-grab that IS industrial wind energy, before more of our priceless American countrysides and wildlife are destroyed.

Ironically, many states are outlawing certain pesticides to “protect bees, birds, butterflies and other pollinators,” while continuing to mandate (via Renewable Portfolio Standards – RPS) pollinator-slaughtering industrial wind sprawl.

Elected officials – both Democrat and Republican – who are on board with President’s Obama’s ‘green’ assault in the name of halting ‘Climate Change’ are complicit in destroying the rural fabric, environment and wildlife that is the grandeur of America – including the slaughter of our nation’s eagles. This assault, and those who promote it, must be removed.

WHY should American taxpayers continue to fund dysfunctional wind energy, when even the U.S. EPA air chief, Janet McCabe admits that the EPA’s analysis shows that “wind power can expand throughout the Clean Power Plan compliance period, from 2022 to 2030, even if the tax credit is not renewed”? As long as taxpayer-funded wind welfare (the Wind Production Tax Credit – PTC) exists, State’s without RPS policies are subsidizing the market-distorting, environmentally-destructive energy choices of others, while those with RPS policies are being shielded from the true costs of wind energy.

Below is a letter I authored for a local newspaper fighting against an industrial wind developer. Only a grassroot rebellion, led by rural environmentalists against urban special-interest ‘environmentalists’ can turn the tide.

Typical Windy-Disinformation Sales Propaganda

The brochure APEX ‘Clean’ Energy recently distributed in western New York State along the shores of Lake Ontario is typical of deceitful windy-disinformation campaigns seen across the United States.

Much like APEX’s website (which pictures APEX’s staff in an idyllic countryside setting, with NO industrial wind turbines in sight!), the front cover of APEX’s brochure pictures a farm – without a single industrial wind turbine in sight – absurdly titled: “Wind Energy: Good for Property Values.”

How stupid does APEX think people are? Any honest real estate person will tell you that the most important consideration when buying a property is: LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!

Even worse is the shameless Wyoming County Supervisors who are quoted in APEX’s brochure – Eagle’s Joe Kushner and Sheldon’s John Knab (both of whom will NOT seek re-election this year, and at least one is reportedly leaving the area).

Both Kushner and Knab pimped their towns out to Big Wind for a few recycled taxpayer dollars, making themselves some of the wind industry’s favorite go-to-guys. Sheldon Supervisor, John Knab, has traveled as far as the state of Alabama (that we know of), speaking on behalf of the wind industry.  Knab and Kushner seem despicably intent on turning more countrysides into bird-slaughtering, industrial wind factories by aiding and abetting Big Wind hucksters, like APEX, with their windy-disinformation campaigns.

The civil discord and environmental destruction Knab and Kushner orchestrated here in Wyoming County is reminiscent of when Native Americans sold Manhattan for a bunch of beads – their ignorance taken advantage of by those who could not care less about them.

APEX’s brochure also disingenuously lists two Orangeville, NY properties as selling above assessed value, while failing to mention that both those properties had significant acreage – most important since farmland in Wyoming County has been going for $6,000 – $12,000 an acre (since the installation of the Batavia yogurt factory).

For obvious reasons, APEX did NOT mention the fact that at least ten Orangeville properties have sold BELOW their assessed value since Invenergy’s wind factory went up, and many others haven’t sold at all.

APEX’s brochure also neglected to mention the ongoing lawsuit in Orangeville, and the skyrocketing Wyoming County tax rate, which has risen yearly over the past 12 years (another 9.68% this year), in direct correlation with the installation of wind factories here.

It’s no surprise that APEX didn’t include this report – which shows a 56% DECREASE in property values near APEX’s Illinois project:


The story is the same everywhere. Sprawling industrial wind factories negatively impact property values!

More Wind = “Skyrocketing” electricity rates

There’s also pesky little facts like NYS’s “skyrocketing” electricity rates that need to be considered.

According to NYSERDA, the average NYS residential electricity rate in 1999 was 13.3 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh).  The first NYS wind factories went up in 2000 (Wethersfield & Madison).  20 wind factories later, and the average residential electricity rate in NYS as of February, 2015, is now 19.8 cents per kWh (according to the EIA, as cited by NYSERDA) – one of the highest rates in the nation, and nearly a 50% increase since New York State began mindlessly plastering countrysides with redundant generation of industrial wind factories. (Of further interest – only 2% of NYS’s electricity comes from coal.)

Wind Energy Performance – a “LEMON” by any measure

Regarding industrial wind’s performance – New York State’s wind factories have been averaging a pathetic 24%.  Any other piece of equipment – be it a machine, person or animal, that operated only 24% of the time would have been dubbed a “LEMON” and put out to pasture a long time ago!  Which one of you would buy a vehicle that only operated 24% of the time?  You wouldn’t.  You couldn’t afford to.  It’s just that simple.  But when the state and federal government are in charge of spending our money, economic reality doesn’t seem to matter.

Physicist and Malone, NY Town Board member, Jack Sullivan, reported on the reality of wind’s failure to produce in his article:  “Some Lessons from New York.”

Sullivan explained, “Both Vesta and GE turbines have a manufacturer’s life expectancy rating of 20 years, yet no New York wind project is on track to sell enough electricity in 20 years to pay for itself.”

Mr. Sullivan used the wind industry’s 20-year life expectancy claim for his calculations. The inconvenient truth exposed in another report, however, says that “wind turbines last only half as long” as the wind industry has claimed – making the fact that they can never pay for themselves even more evident.

These things aren’t ‘wind farms,’ they’re tax farms – in the business of harvesting our taxpayer and ratepayer dollars, and transferring them into the pockets of rich, multi-national corporations.  All of this enabled because of cronyism in high places and short-sightedness, willful ignorance, and greed of those willing to suck on the teat of wind welfare at the rest of our expense.


Mary Kay Barton, a retired Health Educator, is a tireless advocate for reliable, affordable electricity for all Americans.



  1. Sherri Lange  

    Thank you for torching this useless parasitic industry, Mary Kay.

    Keep up your passionate work!


  2. Cathi Orr  

    As a person who was forced to leave FORMERLY BE-LOVED Wyoming County Farm in Orangeville NY and after a long intensive battle with the soul-less Industrial wind Company Invenergy and whereas the damage to the residents and victims who live in the beautiful rural areas are ignored because as we all know the wind industry is ONLY ABOUT THE MONEY, Mary Kay Barton AS USUAL HAS SAID IT BEST!!!
    Cathi Orr Wyoming County Industrial Wind Turbine refugee, Forced of my Farm and home because of negative impacts. of GREED Energy- Less, Politician Driven and Facilitated Industry… HAVE LIVED UNDER THE TURBINES… AND HATE THEM WITH GOOD REASON!!!!


  3. Eric A. Tuttle  

    This article covers many truths about Wind Energy, a source that has been tried many times throughout the history of human existence and met with the same resulting conclusion.
    One thing not specifically covered is in that since “Energy can neither be created nor destroyed, only converted” is how we convert any energy using the most efficient method then making the most efficient use of our converted energy. Creating more harm by following an illusion of doing good, for the profit of those in control of a concept known to be the wrong solution shows lack of wisdom from our leaders and allowing this to happen, from our citizens.
    Doing the math, based on science proves that Wind power, a conversion of energy, consists of more invested CO² output in their construction in the “Cradle to Grave” Lifetime assessment than they would save in 4 times their “Maximum average” lifespan. A typical 2.0 MWh turbine holds 80.85 years of invested CO² within, from mining to recycling of steel, copper, carbon fiber, epoxies paints and any other components such as wire sheathing plastics, transportation, the people that work the jobs travel to and from work, their lives associated with these jobs. A massive spiral effect.
    Meanwhile the converted energy derived from wind turbines, places an energy deficiency in their wakes. That of changing rain, snow, heat & cooling patterns on the land that our natural services depend on to be able to provide us with cleansing of water, air and refuse remaining by man and the Eco-System. Not so noticeable in any given day, month or year but eventually shifting snow or rain deposits may shift locations of plant growth, streams, nature habitats and so on.
    Local Generation, for Local Use should come first with excesses being grid tied to provide for areas of non-generation. This is where incentives should be placed, not in the pockets of foreign corporations such as VESTAS who first received U.S. taxpayer funding under the “Economic Incentive” plan under Obama’s first administration, and again appearing near failure until more or reinstatement of PTC’s appear to be forthcoming. Both times they made an apparent comeback to a sustainability level to become worthy of receiving this funding.
    It is time for us not to request that our leaders stop this Corporate Welfare, but DEMAND IT! as the Air Exchange Heat pumps, and SOLAR is the next “Big Frauds” in line for this funding.
    Burning our food, in the form of Ethanol, (the worst of any energy source for high power requirements) is insane. Energy from food sources best serves living tissue, so the Math says.


    • Jim Traub  

      The argument against ethanol does not hold up, as corn feed stock for ethanol also has co products of CO2 and hi protein animal feed. The animal feed has approximately 3X the protein of the raw corn stock. This means a reduction in per unit protein transport costs, an energy reduction.


  4. Will the Ohio Power Siting Board say YES to BigWind (again)? | saveourskylineohio  

    […] margin. Mary Kay Barton has an excellent post at Master Resource which we highly recommend reading. http://www.masterresource.org/windpower-problems/industrial-wind-vs-rural-america-electricity-marke… . In her closing paragraph she says, “These things aren’t ‘wind farms,’ they’re tax farms […]


  5. Barry Higgins  

    I live close to a installation under construction now
    Also I have always felt that HYDRO POWER was the best and most efficient way to go –
    A hydro dam is constantly renewing itself – more dependable than wind – easier to control and monitor and get to and repair if & when needed – if the fish are a problem — build a fish ladder – we have been doing this for a hundred years – this also takes care of fire protection – doesn’t change the landscape and generally increases the value of property
    Of course, I am not an engineer – just a common folk (75yrs old)— PAYING THE BILL


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    […] then they bribe or force rural and vacation area communities to accept dozens of towering wind turbines that impact thousands of acres, destroy scenic views, […]


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