ECO-Northwest’s 1-month, $15,000 study, sponsored by the local business lobby organization, the Phoenix Group, has been met with deep skepticism in the Kittitas Valley. Regardless of how people feel about wind farms in this valley, most people recognize this report as simply a blatant endorsement of proposed local wind energy projects, bought and paid for by those behind these projects. A local newspaper story about ECO Northwest’s report titled “Are Wind Farm Benefits Full of Hot Air?” (The Yakima Herald-Republic, 10/2102) reflects this public skepticism about the impartiality of this study. The report makes the incredible claim that property values will not be affected and the unsubstantiated claim that the county will receive millions of dollars in increased revenue. Although the wind energy companies state that they will hire only 22 people, the report manages to inflate this to 53 jobs and claims that these people will somehow result in an additional $4.2m being spent within the county. ECO Northwest’s report also neglects to consider the effect of major wind farms on tourism, one of the most important factors in the local economy. It does not consider alternative locations for such projects, or alternative forms of renewable energy in Kittitas County, or whether the county will benefit from the power generated. Nor does it consider that the proposed location for these wind farms is an area that the city of Ellensburg will need for future expansion of its population, an area that will be closed off for housing if wind farms are built there.
This web site provides performance data on wind turbines in California from 1985-2003.
High annual growth rates over the past years resulted in an installed wind power capacity of 12 000 MW in Germany by the end of 2002 which generated about 17.3 MWh electricity, that is about 3.7 % of the German electricity consumption. This development was made possible by laws introducing feed-in tariffs for wind power generation. Due to the fluctuating nature of wind power generation the feed-in of growing amounts into the grid causes considerable challenges and costs for affected transmission system operators, who have to ensure a save grid operation, though basically good working wind power prediction tools exist. The owner of wind turbines do not have to deal with these problems since the Renewable Energy Act (EEG) ensures that their generated power is compensated for by fixed feed-in tariffs. In the long run, this is not a sustainable approach: Wind power needs to compete sooner or later fully with other power generating technologies at the market and wind turbine owners need to be able to sell a tradable product. After successfully supporting the development of the wind power technology, an approach is needed for including the owners of wind turbines in the task of realizing other ways than simply providing growing amounts of balancing power for wind power feed-in and gradually face them with the energy economic reality of integrating large amounts of wind power into the grid.
Having had hundreds of queries from park owners, park users and other members of the public concerned about the increasing number of wind farms in the planning pipeline I have put this document together. Please note I have been helping campaign against wind farms for over 10 years so my view are somewhat partisan, however, I urge you to read the following before coming to your own conclusions.
Kelly Alexander believed that windpower would be a good energy source. He was told the machines were not noisy. No one told him about the blade flicker that shines even through closed blinds or the low frequency noise that penetrates his home with doors and windows tightly closed and storm windows installed. Recently, the turbine owner visited Kelly and asked what he could do to help the situation. He said, “Stop lying about these turbines. Tell people the truth.”
Thank you for your enquiry about wind farm noise. I should probably explain my background and interest in wind farms. I have been a noise and acoustic consultant for more than 30 years and most of my current work is dealing with the assessment of environmental noise as it affects residential properties. I work equally for those potentially creating noise and those affected by it. I have been a supporter of wind energy and other forms of renewable energy for some 35 years. I have carried out noise assessments for both “sides” in planning applications for wind farms and adopt the same method of assessment whoever employs me.
I thought it might be helpful for the members of the Town Board, as well as for the residents of the Town of Sardinia, to briefly address a number of frequently asked questions regarding land use moratoria:
Wind energy, fed to the grid to save resources and reduce emissions, requires control power for balancing fluctuations; this causes fuel losses in thermal power stations and limits the degree of energy substitution. Facilities for energy storage are needed when greatly extending wind power use off-shore, at the same time generating secondary fuel for stationary and mobile applications.
On August 20, New York Governor Pataki announced that the state would give $17 million to four private companies to develop five more “wind farms” in various parts of New York, adding to the 3 existing “wind farms.” The proposed “wind farms” raise questions that will need to be considered by New York’s electric customers, taxpayers, and citizens concerned about impairment of property and scenic values and other environmental concerns.
Under Vermont's two-part Quechee test, a determination must first be made as to whether a proposed project will have an adverse impact on aesthetics and the scenic and natural beauty of an area because it would not be in harmony with its surroundings. If the answer is in the affirmative, the inquiry then advances to the second prong to determine if the adverse impact would be undue.
NFO System Three's report prepared in 2002 for VisitScotland on the potential impact of industrial wind turbines on Scotland's critically important tourist industry. It includes extensive surveys with diverse stakeholders as well as brief overviews of conditions in other european countries.
The purpose of this report is to identify and characterize the range of options available to municipalities for purchasing green power and improving the efficiency with which electricity is consumed. Municipalities have several viable options for purchasing electricity in a fashion that is consistent with the energy, cost, and environmental goals of the community. Municipalities are in a better position to achieve certain policy goals than are individual customers through their collective buying power. A municipality’s advantage lies in the size of its electricity load, in the potential for more sophisticated decision-making than individual customers can apply, and in the potential for reflecting more of the public interest in the decision-making process.
The Tennessee Valley Authority proposes to construct and operate a wind farm in Tennessee. TVA also proposes to construct and operate a Regenesys™ Energy Storage facility near the selected wind farm site. The wind farm would demonstrate a technology for generating electric power with minimal environmental pollution to be marketed through TVA’s Green Power Switch® program and would consist of 13 to 16 wind turbines. The Regenesys facility would demonstrate an effective technology for storing the energy generated by the wind farm and releasing it at times of high energy demand. This final environmental assessment examines the potential effects of building on Buffalo Mountain in Anderson County (Alternative 1), building on Stone Mountain in Johnson County (Alternative 2), or not building a 20 MW wind farm and associated energy storage facility (Alternative 3). Appendix F: The Impact of Views on Property Values "Widely varying opinions have been expressed about the potential impact of windfarms on the value of nearby property. For example, the proposed (now cancelled) Addison Wind Farm in Wisconsin became controversial, in part, over allegations about property values. Opponents argued that property values would depreciate significantly if the wind farm were built (Don Behm, 2001). On the other hand, RENEWWisconsin quoted several persons representing the real estate industry in other places in Wisconsin and Iowa where wind projects had been built, saying that such projects had no impact on property values (RENEWWisconsin, 2000)....
Published in the Spring 2002 issue of "Fluent News", this article by Thomas Hahn and Jurgen Kroning addresses the turbulence caused by wind turbines.
This Information Memorandum summarizes state regulations and policies that govern or affect the siting of the facilities that use renewable resources to generate electricity for sale in Wisconsin by electric utilities and electric cooperatives. The memorandum also identifies the current amount of electricity generated in Wisconsin from renewable resources.
Comments to FERC by the New England Conference of Public Utility Commissions and the Vermont Department of Public Service
The development of commercial wind power that is currently fashionable is potentially misguided, ineffective and neither environmentally nor socially benign; but it is the right of citizens of rural areas to enjoy both clean and safe energy generation and an unspoiled countryside.
This paper describes a case study in which low frequency noise (LFN) was suspected of causing disturbance in a semi-rural location close to an industrial estate. Previous attempts using conventional acoustic measurement techniques to resolve the case, or even prove the existence of a real acoustic problem, had proved unsuccessful. The study does not involve wind turbine noise directly, but the work done and resulting findings provide insight into identifying the problem of LFN and predicting annoyance.
Jean Vissering's more extensive summary than "Wind Turbine Siting Issues in Vermont" of the workshops held in 2002 at Woodbury College to build a consensus on criteria for siting wind energy projects in Vermont.