Articles filed under Impact on People
SHEFFIELD – Residents here are gearing up for a public showdown to determine how registered voters feel about the proposed Sheffield Wind Farm.
I walked on my normal walk in the woods one day and looked up to the top of the mountain. Just several months before it had been a picturesque view of wilderness beauty ... the kind that attracts tourists and creates much of the state's income. Now, it was lined with these tall mechanical monsters, towering over the trees of an old forest. I am not talking about the quaint and charming windmills of Holland here, we are talking about metal and flashing lights and a size that miniaturizes the grand forest beneath it.
More than 700 Greenbrier County residents have sent letters to the state Public Service Commission, opposing a plan to build one of the largest wind-power projects east of the Mississippi River. The residents say the wind turbines will spoil mountain views, decrease property values, kill bats and birds, hurt tourism and ruin hunting and fishing in the area. They predict the wind turbines will catch fire during lightning strikes. And they say the turbines will interfere with emergency radio communications.
Planning Commission Chairman Brian Keefe had his hands full keeping the overflow audience from drifting away from the siting issue. Many wanted to discuss questions of aesthetics or the merits of wind power. Keefe explained that there would be at least two or three meetings to discuss those other issues.
The Cape-based group campaigning to kill the Nantucket Sound wind farm raised nearly $4.7 million in contributions in calendar year 2004, nearly tripling the amount raised the year before.
Proposed wind farm will set an "alarming" precedent if allowed to go ahead as planned.
People remember Tug Hill as gorgeous and wild. No more.
Rose Bacon, member of the Governor's Energy Task Force and a rancher who owns property in the Flint Hills, spoke about the vulnerability of communities facing proposals from international companies that want to build commercial wind farms in rural areas. She pointed to the lack of “teeth” in regulations, and the attractive tax write-offs granted to wind energy companies, and the inexperience of local officials in dealing with such monstrous deals, depicting a state-wide scenario akin to the “wildcatter days in the oil business.”
John Soininen is a principal with Eolian Renewable Energy, a start-up company seeking to erect a wind energy facility in northern Vermont. In 2005, Mr. Soininen's mother, Alice H. Soininen, a resident of Vermont, submitted this letter to the Rutland Herald newspaper at the time when the Sheffield wind project was proposed near her home in Sutton, Vermont. Today, Ms. Soininen is a vocal advocate for her son's wind project.
Similar grassroots activism is taking root in Sheffield and neighboring villages, where residents call themselves the Ridge Protectors and are circulating petitions against the project and erecting "Save our ridgeline" signs along the roadsides.
Challenging incorrect “popular wisdom” is difficult but, in this case, well worth the effort!
Farmers who have signed contracts have signed away rights to their land. The needs for the wind farm will come first.
I have endured the industrial droning for close to ten years, with the added arrhythmic clunk of the gears from the turning mechanisms. This is described as a “barely noticeable” sound. I beg to differ. Due to this industrial noise pollution, I can no longer bring pets to the property, because the droning disorients them in the woods. The impact to the wildlife must be even more severe, despite the claims of the power company’s ‘consultants’. Regardless, my family’s enjoyment of the quiet of the woods is severely diminished.
The first glimpse of the turbines from state Route 6 presents a surreal image like something from a Road Warrior movie.
Initially, I was delighted. But then I began listening to the concerns of residents near the proposed site, hikers, skiers, birdwatchers, astronomers who frequent the nearby observatory and even trainee pilots concerned about 400 foot wind turbines cropping up in the flight path to the Ithaca airport. As a result, I am no longer an unabashed supporter of tapping Mount Pleasant.
"'Shadow-flicker' is a recognised problem with wind turbines. That's why they aren't built near housing developments. And we want to be good neighbours."
The £1million wind turbine next to Whitemoor Prison is to be switched off at certain times of the year because 'shadow flicker' is upsetting inmates.
We cannot lose sight of Vermont's distinctive place in the world with its open spaces and gorgeous vistas. It is up to us to continue the legacy. Real jobs, real lives depend on it.
In these early stages of U.S. wind development, promoters still have it pretty easy. They're our new best friends! But it's likely their popularity will be short-lived, as it won't take long before rural America realizes that their own initial awe and stupor was contrived, allowing the very quality of their lives to be stolen out from under them, and they will also realize, too late, that their loss was in vain.