Articles from USA
At first gust, wind power sounds like an environmentalist's dream. An endless supply of clean, renewable energy that will help reduce pollution and lower dependence on greenhouse- gas belching power plants and radioactive-waste generating nuclear facilities.
Consider this: We could be looking at 1,000 or more wind turbines taller than the Statue of Liberty on the high ridges of the Flint Hills, and they would contribute only about one-tenth of 1 percent of our current electricity use. That simply isn't worth the destruction of our unique Tallgrass Prairie land resource.
The benefits of wind farms are dubious and undemonstrated. Going headlong into the business of wind farming, either for the revenue or the energy, is less than responsible.
What's the matter with Kansas? For one thing, The Wichita Eagle.
Resolving Our Cultural Identity Crisis: Agriculture vs. Environment "...this concept of preserving land in private hands has become a great theme of our region. Our Flint Hills culture has rested on this principle: that we want our land to remain agriculturally productive in private hands, namely producing high quality beef cattle, at the same time we preserve the Flint Hills much as they were hundreds of years ago."
"I realize that our ridge tops are not a legally constituted commons in whose future we all have an interest. But wouldn't it be a benefit to the community if they were? After all, they represent a natural legacy left to us by our predecessors in this area, whether by intention or default."
I can’t help but think if it weren’t for Zilkha bursting at the seams with taxpayer money, that this wind turbine controversy bitterly pittting a few large landowners against hundreds of ordinary citizens, would never have happened.
Many of our politicians have run for office under the slogan, "Let's keep Maine, for Maine." If that is a true desire, then we should research these windmills much deeper. Call your state representative today. Let him or her know you care about what is happening, and you want more answers. There are too many holes in this process to let the windmills go ahead. Is this right for Maine? It certainly isn't right for me.
Promoters of the wind energy craze, absentee landowners and a few locals hoping for a windfall are about to destroy the soul of the Flint Hills.
Commercial wind turbines are gigantic machines that distort natural light, sound and space. Their impacts are constant, making them oppressive when situated too near to homes and the places where we live.
The study pointed out that when a community focuses on tourism as a strategy for economic vitality, it is important that they coordinate tourism and other economic development activities. Weak or non-existent planning and zoning, polluting industries, etc. can lower the visitors’ impression and the likelihood of repeat visits. Furthermore, that essential word of mouth advertising, so wonderful when everything works well, can work against a community that fails to keep up its appearance and its offerings (YNG study).
Unfortunately, there is a major flaw in all this current "fixative" thinking. Simply put, no matter how strong any Senate mandate, the technology needed to stabilize global atmospheric levels of CO2 does not exist. This crucial fact, noted in science journals, is woefully ignored.
In other words, the ad campaign was little more than "greenwashing" -- disinformation intended to present an environmentally responsible public image. BP wanted journalists, politicians, investors and environmentalists to perceive it as a "socially responsible" leader and reward it accordingly. ...Meanwhile, BP's total wind and solar electrical output last year was barely enough to keep the lights burning in Regina, Sask. -- and thoughtful observers began to realize that wind and solar aren't quite as eco-friendly as activists claim.
It's time to jump off the Production Tax Credit treadmill and work toward a more open, transparent support mechanism such as the Electricity Feed Law.
So what are the true contributions of the wind industry? We have electricity that is too expensive to solve any real energy issues, and very little of it besides. We have little, if any, emissions reduction. We have the destruction of pristine landscapes and waterfronts all over the world due to the careless placement of massive, inefficient wind turbines… (a phenomenon that is just beginning to frighteningly snowball here in the U.S), and we have a big money making scheme for those who can afford to cash in. We also have one more thing… the deterioration in the quality of life for those unfortunate enough to find themselves and their neighborhoods targets of the uncaring developers who bully their way into communities and into people’s lives.
The Sacred Hills, by Don Coldsmith, a Bantam Books paperback, copyright 1998. Courtesy Protect The Flint Hills website. For whatever reason, perhaps because we feel closer to the divine or perhaps from a hill we can see farther and with greater clarity, human beings of all cultures seem spiritually drawn to high places. “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help,” sang the psalmist: for Looks Far that statement was literally true. It was from a hilltop that the bison stampede both destroyed his enemies and provided winter food for his tribe. More important, it was the Sacred Hills that brought together, for the first time, two warring tribes; love for land proved stronger than human animosities. The Flint Hills were indeed a holy place for the People.
But the most eyebrow raising turn of events took place in June when King's conservation commissioner, Ronald Lovaglio, replaced LURC staffers who gave Kenetech's project a negative review. They had pointed out that the potential impact on the fragile mountainous soils and endangered birds were serious project flaws. Following the staff replacements, another LURC employee resigned, protesting against heavy-handed tactics.
The commission unanimously voted down the proposal after a five-hour hearing attended by more than 150 people at Santa Clarita City Hall. Zond Systems, the largest producer of wind energy in California, had hoped to erect more than 300 windmills--some as tall as 150 feet--on vacant, mountainous land near Gorman.
Hager, a former Duke Energy engineer beginning his second term in the House, argues the mandate unfairly forces utility customers to subsidize renewable energy, which costs more than traditional forms. He says that runs against state policy ordering utilities to provide “least cost” electricity.
The proposed Deerfield Wind project in Readsboro and Searsburg is continuing to move forward with the Public Service Board approving a plan for a bear study and the public comment period set by the Green Mountain National Forest ended.