Impact on Wildlife or Minnesota
Few are aware of the staggering profit by way of contracts payable to avian specialists in an industry borne from wind towers that kill birds.
This service industry is referred to as "Adaptive Management," and/or "long-term environmental monitoring." Its value is $2 million to $3 million first year startup for a wind project, based on the value of Altamont, Calif., wind tower monitoring contracts.
These contracts represent $1 million per year paid to the monitor during construction phase, and impose terms as Mass Audubon has in their "Challenge" press release: "We also propose adoption of an Adaptive Management Plan that includes a rigorous monitoring program beginning at the construction phase and continuing for at least three years post-construction." ..........Mass Audubon is in a position to profit by counting bird carcasses, "monitoring," while attempting to "solve" this problem; the industry term for this is "mitigation," if Cape Wind is permitted and construction begins.
The "going green" statement are becoming boring and redundant. Those of us in rural agriculture production have been "going green" for more than 100 years; the press just keeps changing the term.
If wind were such a great idea here, why didn't the power companies build wind turbines years ago? The turbine I built five years ago is for sale. The reason: not enough wind!
SIR - As a keen bird watcher, I am a regular visitor to the Knowstone area and was alarmed at the proposal to put up massive wind turbines in the Batsworthy Cross area.
The area is totally unsuitable for such a development. Has anyone considered how dangerous these structures would be to drivers on the busy A361? They would be an extremely hazardous distraction at such very close proximity.
Nova Scotia has the potential to become a world leader in tidal power. But to be successful, we have to make sure we get it right economically, socially and environmentally.
That's why it's disappointing and even a little alarming that Premier Rodney MacDonald's government rushed out an announcement last Tuesday on a multimillion-dollar test centre on the shores of the Minas Basin - four months before an extensive environmental report is due that is supposed to establish the ground rules for tidal development in the Bay of Fundy. ...In its haste to claim progress on green energy, the government failed to establish a regime of best practices [on siting wind farms]. No standards were put in place, for example, for minimum setbacks from residential properties, protecting sightlines, or trying to engage community ownership. This resulted in acrimony in many rural villages that suddenly found themselves hosting towering industrial turbines owned by people living far away.
It wasn't until this past fall that MacDonald's government agreed to cost-share a $45,000 study with the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities on best practices for bylaws regulating wind turbine siting.
Death, destruction and insomnia are marketed as "renewable electricity" to urban consumers. The federal production tax credit drives it all, with additional subsidies on national forest, where no property taxes are levied. ...We'd have to replace nearly every tree with a turbine to offset even a small amount of coal's impact, devastating the forest in the process. Without a national policy on energy conservation and efficiency, we're whistling in the wind anyway.
People who express concern about bird mortality at wind turbines are usually treated with condescension at best (with phrases like "Bird-lovers are all a-flutter at the thought that Tweetie Bird might get hurt"). I've seen a dozen wind industry fact sheets pointing out, rather patronizingly, that wild birds are killed by many things, including window strikes, automobiles, and roaming cats. This is true. But the birds most often killed by cars and house cats are the birds that live around roads and houses - abundant, widespread species, with populations large enough to sustain the losses. If ten million House Sparrows are hit by cars every year, it won't make a dent in their total population. But when you place hazards around stopover habitats for migratory birds, you are turning this equation upside down.
The bulk of the Cool Cities Coalition talking points are based on "coal mining: bad; wind turbines: good." This rhetorical trick is the fallacy of false choice, as in "it's better to drink bleach than gasoline," while neglecting alternatives, such as drinking water, whisky or nothing at all.
The coalition can't prove "wind turbines: good."
However, residents should not view Minuteman's $220,000 carrot as a magic bullet to solve the town's fiscal woes. The payments wouldn't start until the turbines are in use - and that's at least three years down the road. Given the progress of other projects in this state, three years is a decidedly optimistic estimate.
The Transcript has generally been against the development of large windmill projects in the Berkshires, largely because of their environmental impact and because of the lack of a cohesive plan on where to site them.
We are still undecided about the merits of this particular project ...The townspeople are the ones who will have to live with the turbines. We urge them to consider carefully all the pros and cons before casting their votes at the Jan. 3 special town meeting to consider the Minuteman bylaw.
"Many environmental groups have been claiming that too few people are paying attention to the science of climate change, but some of those same groups are ignoring the science that shows wind energy's negative impacts on bird and bat populations."
That willful ignorance may be ending.
...All this, and the promise of quick money, effectively silences all voices of reason in the debate that will bring the most drastic change some communities will ever experience. Why? Because wind companies know that their shining green (dollars) exterior is simply a facade which quickly unravels upon critical examination.
What's the problem with the Pickens Plan? We've been told that the main obstacles to wind power are financial and technological. The Pickens Plan buys into this logic. But senior wind leaders know more. They have revealed that while technology and investment matter, one of their biggest challenges to installing large wind farms is building social acceptance.
Don't Americans love wind power? A 2008 Zogby International public poll reported that 85 percent of the 7,000 Americans surveyed agreed that federal incentives should support wind-energy development. While polls show that most Americans overwhelmingly support wind power in theory, few communities are asking for large-scale wind projects in their back yards. ...While the Pickens Plan is bold, it lacks a nuanced understanding about the obstacles to wind power. Where there is a lack of social acceptance, it is often the result of industry players who assume that "green" power is always welcome and can operate outside the bounds of the democratic process. The Pickens Plan shares some of this hubris.
State lawmakers have determined that major industrial developments, including wind farms, warrant government scrutiny because of potential impacts beyond the land where they're located, be it private, state or federal. That's a sound policy. And because Wyoming's abundant wildlife is treasured by the state's people, it's appropriate that our wildlife management agency have a say in projects that could harm that valuable resource.
The agency has informed the Public Service Board that the agency cannot make the legally required finding of no "undue adverse effect on ...the natural environment," including birds and bats, because there is insufficient evidence to support such a conclusion. The developer has not conducted the wildlife studies requested by the agency for over two years that would provide baseline data on the numbers of birds and bats that migrate over the project site.
On Lewis the turbines will dominate the shores of many trout lochs, yet Lewis Wind Power's environmental survey makes no mention of the environmental impact on the lochs; it makes no reference to the existence of the lochs at all.
The "green lobby" often use terms like "sustainable" to describe the industrial complex that Mr McIver hopes the Barvas Moor would become once the turbines are built.
Industrialisation and the current sustainable lifestyle which has protected a unique ecosystem for thousands of years are incompatible, it is impossible for them to work hand in hand ...
With the passage of the Green Energy and Economy Act last May, the Province signalled that it would no longer tolerate grassroots opposition that smacked of NIMBYism. To get green developments (along with the flood of envisioned jobs) moving at top speed, municipalities were stripped of their planning powers on such projects. In this climate of aggressive fast-tracking, there is simply no imperative to create a Canadian equivalent of the AWWI.
It all sounds nice and crunchy on the surface, but Whole Foods might soon find itself picketed the same way Wal-Mart is, but instead of unions it'll be environmentalists.
It may be the time to consider how wind farms fit in with the values which the Wilderness Society represents. If the Society is prepared to go through such a prolonged and worthy fight to save the forests, with all the financial and emotional costs involved, it would be consistent to regard wind farm development with the same scepticism with which it regards the wood chip industry. Both are potent adversaries to the values which I hope we share.
Our area, in particular, does not seem to possess an accurate spot for windmills. Somerset County seems to be a target area for the windmill companies, which is fine, but no one seems to consider all parties involved. In my opinion, money has blinded many eyes and covered many ears.
Is everyone taking into consideration the wildlife and trees that are abandoned and lost? What about the constant noises that can affect the nearby homeowners and their families? Somerset is a rural area. Many people retreat to our town to get away from life in the city and the sight of windmills seems to disturb the country scene that everyone has grown to know and love. ...I’m not anti-energy, but if proper locations are not located in Somerset, then windmills should be situated somewhere else, preferably a place where they seem more fitting and they will have less of an impact on people and nature.
Juniata Valley Audubon asks concerned residents to contact Gov. Ed Rendell, their senators and representatives and the Department of Environmental Protection to voice their displeasure over the gross waste of almost $400,000 to study a proposal that would cause so much harm to both outdoor recreation and wildlife, and provide only minuscule amounts of expensive, unreliable electricity.
I fear greatly the rush to turn its high ground into an electrical generator for out-of-state interests. I think Gov. John Baldacci is way off base in his unbridled support of this frantic race for government handouts that will enrich a greedy few at the expense of many ... including wildlife that can't speak for itself.
Mr. Carter's clear and thoughtful commentary against industrial-grade wind developments should speak loudly to citizens of Maine.