Articles filed under Impact on People from Florida

Turbine skeptics question effects on environment

As Florida Power & Light Co. gets closer to a public hearing on its wind turbine plan, skeptics of the project have plenty of questions left unanswered. What about the effect on birds? Or sea turtles? And why put turbines in St. Lucie County in the first place? Nick Blount, external affairs manager for FPL on the Treasure Coast, tried to answer some of those questions from about 20 members of the St. Lucie County Conservation Alliance on Wednesday night and promised to try to find answers to others raised by residents. "I respect people's opinion about our wind project, but what I do want to do is tell our side of the story," Blount said. "That's what we want."
29 May 2008

Wind study means more hot air

Our impressive upper-level winds (average year-round 13.8 mph, no less) will make those jumbo-jet-sized turbine blades churn merrily. That's far faster than the 9 mph the super-efficient Siemens generators need to start turning over - and turning us on. I know the estimated 3,600 lucky Hutchinson Island recipients of this windy bounty are besides themselves with excitement over the news. I'm not so sure how the other hundreds of thousands of FPL customers feel about footing most of the $45 million bill.
27 Apr 2008

Meet Corrine Fredrick, a new activist

So it's dead - or on life support, at best. The news that three county commissioners went public this week against the Florida Power & Light Co. wind turbine project on Hutchinson Island effectively seems to have killed the idea. All we're lacking now is the official obituary. Paula Lewis was the latest to make up her mind, following Doug Coward, but it was the project's chief proponent - Chris Craft - who turned a few heads Tuesday when he announced his opposition.
8 Mar 2008

New FPL plan no better

Fortunately, Florida Power & Light Co. has withdrawn plans to build 400-foot windmills on two oceanfront parks in St. Lucie County. Unfortunately, moving three of the wind turbines to other public land bought for conservation would be no improvement. It would be the same problem in a new location. No matter how much the state wants to emphasize renewable energy, allowing such private projects on preservation land would set a bad precedent for the entire state. ...If, as a utility spokeswoman said, FPL wants to be a good neighbor, it's easy: Stop the push to build windmills on conservation lands.
19 Jan 2008

No wind turbines in parks, FPL says

Bowing to public pressure, Florida Power & Light Co. has dropped its plan to put 400-foot-tall wind turbines on public, waterfront parks, company officials said Wednesday. Instead, it wants to build three on land owned by the state and the South Florida Water Management District and six on FPL property at the St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant. ...Indian River Drive resident Sandy Steinruck said she's still concerned the wind turbine construction will damage valuable wildlife habitat. "We've seen in Colorado the damage and the mess they create," she said.
17 Jan 2008

Surfers oppose wind turbines along St. Lucie County beaches

St. Lucie County's John Brooks Park and Frederick Douglass Park are beaches people usually go to relax and enjoy nature. Each public facility is set aside for conservation and recreation, but an ill wind has blown in a new swell of controversy for local surfers - and it's not red tide. It's Florida Power & Light's "Winds of Change" initiative to build nine commercial wind generators along St. Lucie County's remaining desolate beaches that has them all riled up. Standing roughly 412 feet tall, each white cylindrical turbine is almost 100 feet taller than the Statue of Liberty and requires an impact zone of one acre. ..."As far as Surfrider goes, these wind turbines should not be built on land that is set aside for conservation and recreation," said Andy Brady, Fort Pierce surfer and chairman of the Surfrider Foundation's Treasure Coast Chapter. "We're all for alternative energy, but not on public land."
17 Jan 2008

Wind turbines: No case

Seeking a new source of energy for this region, Florida Power & Light wants to build nine 400-foot wind turbines along the beach. Some would be on the company's Hutchinson Island property. No problem there. Some, though, also would be at Frederick Douglass and John Brooks parks, which the public bought to preserve. Problem. ...It would be stupid, however, for St. Lucie to give up beachfront at a time when it's so expensive to acquire. And make no mistake, the public would be giving up beachfront, even though some county commissioners have maintained that beachgoers would see no difference. Who are they kidding? A 400-foot turbine that causes the light to flicker would have no more impact than a seagull?
4 Dec 2007

Widow opposes wind turbines at beach park

Jane Brooks, who has been active for 30 years in conservation efforts and worked with her husband for the state to buy the property, said she favors alternative energy sources but not on public beaches. She cited a management plan that says John Brooks Park was purchased to "maintain the land in as natural a state as possible" and to "preserve a section of coastline from further development, protect its native plants and animals and provide recreational opportunities for the people of St. Lucie County." Coward said that allowing wind turbines contradicts promises made to voters when they approved a bond issue to buy beach access for preservation and recreation.
28 Nov 2007
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