Save Our SeaShore Alliance to Protect SeaShores & Prime Open Areas from Wind Turbines!

17Mar/140

Kindergarterner Petition Against Wind Turbines!

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Is this kindergartener Alabama’s most effective political activist?

"“I have to do it, Mama! Somebody has to stop them from building the windmills on my beautiful mountain!”"

BY   — 16 MAR, 2014

CLICK HERE TO SIGN

Lillian Coker

Lillian Coker

It has only taken Lillian “Lilli” Coker, 6-year-old kindergartener from Gadsden, Ala., three days to get almost 600 Alabamians to sign a petition encouraging the Alabama legislature to “Say ‘no’ to wind turbines,” a spurt of political activism that was brought on by a memory she shared with her late father.

Her mom, Cara Coker, explains:

On March 12, 2014, I picked Lilli up from school and as we were walking out of the door she handed me a piece of notebook paper with “Partition” written in kindergartener handwriting across the top. She asked, “Will you please sign my petition, Mama?”

My previous profession of 14 years was education so I asked, “What’s a petition?”

Lillian quickly replied, “A petition is something you get people to sign if you want someone to do something or stop doing something. Ok…like say somebody is going to tear down my favorite playground. I would start a petition for them not to tear it down and if I got enough signs they would stop.”

I was quite impressed with her thorough definition and clever example and proceeded with, “Well, what are you petitioning?”

Without skipping a beat, Lillian said, “I want to stop those people from building windmills on top of our beautiful mountain! You know the one where we hike and climb? If they put windmills up there then we won’t be able to go there anymore and windmills won’t work here anyway…we don’t have enough wind, Mama! When they build them they’re going to be big and dangerous and they’ll have to tear up the rocks and land. It’s just not a good idea! We HAVE to stop them!”

Powerful words coming from a six year old!

Through social networking and word of mouth, Lillian’s petition has traveled fast and she has been asked to hand deliver her petition in Montgomery Wednesday, March 19, 2014.

When I asked her if she wanted to go to Montgomery and do this her response was, “I have to do it, Mama! Somebody has to stop them from building the windmills on my beautiful mountain!”

Cara and Lillian Coker

Cara and Lillian Coker

Yellowhammer has covered in-depth a bill currently making its way through the Alabama legislature that would provide basic oversight for wind energy companies seeking to operate in the state.


RELATED: Are your tax dollars going to help fund a wind farm in Alabama?


Sen. Phil Williams, who is Lilli’s senator, is sponsoring the bill, but it is currentlybogged down in the Alabama House Commerce Committee, where lobbyists representing the wind energy companies are hoping it will die. A public hearing on the bill is scheduled for Wednesday.

Wind energy providers have proposed wind farms in 8 different Alabama counties, but there are currently no laws on the books to protect citizens and communities when it comes to wind energy production. For instance, while regulations on coal mining require an almost unimaginable amount of research, proposals, permits, reclamation plans, insurance and numerous other safeguards overseen by independent government entities, wind farms are largely free to do as they please without any real oversight to speak of.

That has caused citizens in areas of the state where wind farms are being proposed to seek help from their legislators. Two citizens groups have even filed lawsuits asking for a judge to block the proposed project, at least until the state creates a regulatory framework to protect the local community.

But Lilli’s petition may be the most effective maneuver yet, because it shows that the issue is starting to catch on with citizens all over the state in an election year.

Yellowhammer caught up with Lilli over the weekend to find out what compelled her to launch her petition. She said one of the areas where wind farms are being proposed reminds her of time she spent with her father, Jeff Coker, who passed away in 2012.

“Hiking there reminds me of my daddy,” Lilli said. “There are lots of people who go there to hike and I don’t know why they would want to build windmills on Cherokee Rock Village. They’re not going to work because there’s not enough wind. People at my school taught me about petitions and I started one because I want to stop them from building them there.”

Lilli said she’s excited to go to Montgomery this week and personally deliver the petition to her elected officials.

“I’m going to tell them Good afternoon, My name is Lilli. I started this petition to stop you from building windmills on my mountain,” she said. “I love to hike there and if you build them the animals that live there will have to find somewhere else to go and there’s not really anywhere else for them to go.”

And it sounds like this may be only the beginning for Lilli. She says she plans to continue pushing causes she believes in, even when she “grows up.”

“I want to be a helper for all the animals that might lose their homes because of stuff like windmills,” she said in conclusion.

If you would like to help Lilli reach her goal of 1,000 signatures before she presents her petition to the Alabama legislature on Wednesday, CLICK HERE TO SIGN, and take a moment to SHARE this story with your Facebook, Twitter and email friends.

http://yellowhammernews.com/statepolitics/kindergartener-alabamas-effective-political-activist/

5Apr/130

POLL: Falmouth, Mass. selectmen, finance committee stand firm on removing turbines

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

SOSS Editor Note: Town to Fight State over Misrepresented Wind Energy.

By Scott A. Giordano THE BULLETIN  Posted Apr 04, 2013 @ 07:57 PM

The Falmouth Board of Selectmen and the Falmouth Finance Committee held a joint April 4 meeting and unanimously stood by the selectmen’s prior vote to remove the town’s wind turbines, despite receiving none of their requested financial assistance from the state to do so. The latest estimate is that it will cost the town about $14 million to remove both Wind 1 and Wind 2 at the Falmouth Wastewater Treatment Facility.

Selectmen voted to support removing the industrial-sized turbines, which have been a source of division in the community, in January. They since have tried to secure a financial commitment from state officials to help them do so, prior to drafting final language for warrant articles in the April 9 special Town Meeting.

Wind 1 was funded by a mix of general obligation bonds, grants and advanced payments on renewable energy credits (RECs), which are generated when carbon-neutral electricity is produced and then sold on the market. On April 2, the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) asked its board of directors to authorize the board chairman to appoint a subcommittee that will potentially modify the existing REC purchase agreement with Falmouth. However, the MassCEC staff memorandum that makes this request also states that Falmouth will not receive a contract waiver if Wind 1 is decommissioned and removed.

Wind 2 was funded entirely by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 through the state’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund grant/ loan program. Town Manager Julian Suso stated April 4 that he received electronic communication from Susan Perez, executive director of the Massachusetts Water Pollution Abatement Trust (MWPAT), which is the state's "pass-through" agency for the federal stimulus funds. Perez stated the MWPAT is requiring the town enter into an agreement to operate Wind 2 at a level that qualifies as an ‘energy efficient' project, or it will reinstate the town’s obligation to pay principle and interest on the loan and “take such other actions as it deems necessary and appropriate.”

Selectmen Chairman Kevin Murphy said he believes the state is being punitive. "I think it’s fair to say that the state does not want to see what the Board of Selectmen wanted to see happen," Murphy said.

Despite this, the selectmen and Finance Committee stood firm and united in requesting an indefinite postponement of Article 21 and supporting Articles 22 and 23 at special Town Meeting.

Article 21 was postponed because its content is now addressed in the proposed Article 22, as an attempt to vote on everything together at the special Town Meeting. "I took considerable effort with Town Counsel to develop a recommendation on one article so the town can take one vote and one motion to represent the town’s goals," said Heather Harper, Falmouth's assistant town manager on April 4.

Article 22 will require a 2/3 majority of Town Meeting voters for Falmouth to borrow money to pay for costs related to dismantling and decommissioning the wind turbines. Special legislation is also required to both remove an asset like the wind turbines, and to potentially resell the turbines to a non-government entity. The total estimated obligation to remove Wind 1 and Wind 2 is now listed as about $14 million in this warrant article.

Article 23 will not require a 2/3 majority vote, since it does not borrow money. Instead, this article would transfer $140,000 from the town's free cash fund to supplement the FY 13 and FY 14 operating budgets necessitated by the curtailment or shutdown of both turbines.

Murphy said he is resolute that the issue be brought to voters. "Sometimes you have to take a step back in order to take two steps forward. We have a lot of things facing this community in dollars and cents. But it’s important we gain the trust of the entire community," he said.

More details to come in the April 11 issue of The Bulletin.

Reporter Scott A. Giordano can be reached at sgiordano@wickedlocal.com and you can follow him on Twitter @scottgBulletin.

Read more: POLL: Falmouth selectmen, finance committee stand firm on removing turbines - News - - Falmouth Bulletin http://www.wickedlocal.com/falmouth/news/x1959367870/Falmouth-selectmen-finance-committee-stand-firm-on-removing-turbines#ixzz2Pb6XmEIh
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13Nov/120

Petition to Deny First Wind’s application to build the Bowers Mountain Wind project

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

On Oct 31st the petition to save Bowers Mountain from an industrial wind energy facility received its 600th signature. It looks like we'll get our 700th signature tomorrow (Nov 14th). At this rate we won't reach our goal of 1,000 signatures by the end of November.

We're so grateful that you signed the petition but we need to pick up the pace in the final stretch. Here are three ways you can help us spread the word and get more signatures:

1) Ask other people in your household to sign as individuals. So long as they have their own email account, they can sign. They can set up a temporary gmail account if necessary.

2) Email your friends and family members asking them to help.

3) Send a similar email to any lists you subscribe to, any clubs you belong to and post it on any blogs that you follow.

4) Share the petition by posting it on your facebook page or on your blog if you have one.

Here's the link you need to share:
http://www.change.org/petitions/maine-dep-deny-first-wind-s-application-to-build-the-bowers-mountain-wind-project

23Oct/120

Nantucket Citizens Defeat Wind Turbine

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Nantucket Special Town Meeting 2012

Photo by Jim Powers

Nantucket voters raise their hands in favor of a motion to table a controversial warrant article that sought to expand the powers and jurisdiction of the Historic District Commission.

By Jason Graziadei

I&M Senior Writer

(Oct. 22, 2012) Nantucket voters quickly dispatched with proposals to build a wind turbine in Madaket and expand the powers of the Historic District Commission during Monday's Special Town Meeting.

Barbara Gookin's citizen petition to appropriate $620,000 for a 100 kilowatt wind turbine at the Madaket landfill was overwhelmingly defeated, and the HDC petition, which had garnered significant opposition from the island's real estate and building industries over the past week, was tabled with a motion from one of its supporters.

A large crowd (for a Special Town Meeting) of 632 people showed up at the Nantucket High School auditorium for the meeting, with attendance driven by the wind turbine article, which brought out west end residents, and the HDC petition that generated widespread opposition from two of the largest sectors of the island's economy: building and real estate.

A sea of hands rose to defeat Article 5, Gookin's citizen petition to fund a wind turbine similar in size and cost to the one already operating at Nantucket High School, just a few hundred yards away from the auditorium. It marked the second time this year that Nantucket voters have rejected a wind turbine project at the Madaket landfill. Back in March, island residents also shot down an even larger 900 kilowatt turbine proposal put forward by the town's Energy Study Committee by a similarly large margin.

Voters also approved a series of enterprise fund budget amendments Monday night, the largest being a $1.06 million subsidy from the town’s general fund to Nantucket Memorial Airport to cover a shortfall at the island transportation hub. The subsidy is expected to be repaid by the airport at the end of the current fiscal year.

Only several other warrant articles were called for debate, and Monday's Special Town Meeting wrapped up around 7:30 p.m. Tonight's attendance was 632 people, a 7.5 percent turnout of Nantucket's total of 8,389 registered voters.

For more coverage of Monday's Special Town Meeting, pick up Thursday's Inquirer and Mirror

LIVE UPDATES BELOW

7:20 p.m. Article 11, the citizen petition to expand the powers and jurisdiction of the HDC, was tabled with an overwhelming vote to take no action. Linda Williams, who made the motion to table, is a member of the HDC who supported the proposal. But the island's building and real estate sectors had rallied over the past week to defeat the petition - and appeared to be well represented in the auditorium. A potential deal that emerged over the weekend to refer the petition to a study group fell apart in the final day before the Special Town Meeting began.

7:18 p.m. Debate is underway on Article 11, the citizen petition seeking to expand the power

the powers of the HDC, with a motion to table the proposal from HDC member Linda Williams.

7:15 p.m. Article 8, the zoning bylaw amendment dealing with the town's zoning enforcement officer position, was defeated on a hand count vote. The vote was 327 in favor, with 195 opposed. The required two-thirds threshold was 390 votes.

7:10 p.m. Voting is underway on Article 8, a zoning bylaw amendment which would allow the town manager to appoint any employee of the Building Department as a zoning enforcement officer of the town. Town manager Libby Gibson said the article was meant to improve efficiencies at the newly consolidated Planning and Land Use Services department. The article was called by Lucretia Voigt, who said it could result in inconsistent enforcement, have unintended consequences and wouldn't fix the problems it aimed to solve.

7:05 p.m. The Madaket wind turbine citizen petition, Article 5, was overwhelmingly defeated on a voice vote. A hand count was called for, but the sea of hands in the air to vote "no" led moderator Sarah Alger to declare the two-thirds majority against the proposal.

7:00 p.m. David Goodman's motion to table Article 5, or "essentially to kill the article for this town meeting," as moderator Sarah Alger put it, was defeated on a voice vote.

6:45 p.m. Debate began on Article 5, Barbara Gookin's citizen petition to fund the construction of a wind turbine at the Madaket landfill. With the Board of Selectmen and Finance Committee issuing negative recommendations on the article, Gookin introduced a positive motion to appropriate $620,000 through borrowing to fund the project.

6:40 p.m. Article 1, a series of enterprise fund budget amendments, was approved on a declared majority voice vote. Five municipal enterprise funds required budget adjustments, the largest being a $1.06 million subsidy from the town’s general fund to Nantucket Memorial Airport. The airport deficit is being driven, in part, by increased debt-service costs from the terminal expansion project and the construction of the new general administration building (a project currently underway). The other factor necessitating the budget amendments in the enterprise funds is the state Department of Revenue's financial reporting rules that prohibit them from budgeting any anticipated increases in revenue over the prior year. Town and airport officials hope the subsidies will be repaid from the enterprise funds' retained earnings at the 2013 Annual Town Meeting.

6:22 p.m. Only five warrant articles have been called for debate, including the Madaket wind turbine appropriation and the HDC home rule petition.

6:10 p.m. The 2012 Special Town Meeting is now underway. Moderator Sarah Alger is updating a surprisingly large crowd of Special Town Meeting attendees about technical amendments to tonight's warrant.

The island's building and real estate industries rallied over the past week to defeat David Barham's petition that seeks to expand the powers and jurisdiction of the HDC. A potential deal emerged over the weekend to refer the petition to a study group, but appeared to fall apart in the final hours before the Special Town Meeting.

Tonight will mark the second time this year that Nantucket’s legislative body – the island’s citizens – will convene at the high school auditorium to consider an array of municipal government business.

To read the full story, check out the print edition of The Inquirer and Mirror, or register for the I&M's online edition by clicking here.

Reach Jason Graziadei at jgraziadei@inkym.com

24Sep/120

I am asking for your help for Forest, WI

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Dear Fellow Wind Fighters:

I am asking for your help.

We, in the town of Forest, St. Croix County,WI have been fighting against an industrial wind project for two years. The Highland Wind Farm--41 towers 497 foot tall 2.5 MW turbines (likely Nordex N100)--is on the map for our small township. We stopped the project on a local level about one year ago when we recalled the town board  based on open records that showed evidence of open meeting violations and possible collusion between them and the wind developer, Emerging Energies aka EEW Services, Hubertus, WI. At least two of the three former town board members stand to make financial gain from the wind project. Sound familiar? Our new town board rescinded all permits; however, the wind developer added two more turbines and took their application to the Wisconsin Public Service Commission (PSC), which has the power to grant permitting on projects over 100 MW.

Right now, we are in the fight of our lives before the PSC of Wisconsin. When our group, the Forest Voice (www.theforestvoice.org) requested intervenor compensation from the PSC to hire expert witnesses, we were awarded a paltry sum of $20,000.00 for attorney fees only--nothing for expert witnesses. Another intervenor, CLEAN Wisconsin, a pro-wind "environmental" organization, which is also a registered lobby, received $43,000.00 to hire a so-called sound expert, which, of course, is supporting the wind developer.  At every turn, we believe our voices of opposition are being suppressed, including from the very agency that should be protecting us. If the people of Forest write a public comment on the docket, we cannot testify in person at the public hearing. Yet, we will keep fighting with everything we have.

On Friday, September 21, 2012, the Wisconsin PSC docket began filling with pro-wind public comments urging the PSC commissioners to permit the wind project. I checked around and found out the CLEAN Wisconsin website, the folks that received $43,000.00 for one expert witness, has a link to the docket and are encouraging people to write public comments in support of Highland Wind. I am asking all of you to please, please go to the PSC Docket and submit a public comment regarding the nasty side of industrial wind that we all understand so well.

Directions:

Go to www.psc.wi.gov.

On the left side of the home page is a button to click on "Public Comment."

The Public Comment button will bring you to a page with a list of open cases.

Scroll down a little more than half way and click on "Highland Wind Farm."

A window will open in which you can write a public comment.

 

16May/120

Mass. Moves To Shut Falmouth Turbines Over Noise Levels

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Step may boost wind-power foes

By David Abel    |  BOSTON GLOBE STAFF     MAY 16, 2012

One wind turbine in Falmouth will be turned off, officials said, while the other will continue to operate during the day.

DAVID L. RYAN/GLOBE STAFF

One wind turbine in Falmouth will be turned off, officials said, while the other will continue to operate during the day.

  • For the first time since the state began promoting wind power, environmental officials have recommended shutting down a wind turbine because of elevated noise levels that they described as unacceptable to local residents.

The state Department of Environmental Protection, in a long-awaited response to Falmouth residents’ complaints about noise from two turbines, released a report Tuesday finding that one turbine less than 1,500 feet from the nearest home repeatedly exceeded allowable noise levels.

The findings give ammunition to increasingly vocal opponents of wind power, who have sought to slow the Patrick administration’s efforts to produce 2,000 megawatts of wind power - three-quarters of it from offshore sources - by 2020, up from about 45 megawatts available today. The Falmouth turbines produce a total of 3 megawatts of power.

<br /><br /><br />
“Obviously, we take these findings extremely seriously,’’ said Kenneth Kimmell, the state environmental protection commissioner. “But I don’t think we should jump to conclusions that the experience here can be generalized to other locations.’’

He said numerous other turbines operate in similar proximity to residential areas, such as those in Fairhaven, Hull, and Kingston. Residents in those areas have also fought vigorously to shut down turbines in their communities.

‘People have been complaining about . . . health effects almost as soon as the first turbine began operating.’

Jeffrey Butts John Jay College of Criminal Justice

“I think [this report] demonstrates that Massachusetts DEP calls balls and strikes in an impartial way and holds wind turbines to the same standards as we apply to other industries,’’ Kimmell said. “But there are other turbines operating in residential areas, which have not led to similar complaints. So these results do not implicate turbines everywhere.’’

The agency recommended that the Falmouth turbine that regularly increased noise by more than 10 decibels at the closest home be turned off immediately, for at least 30 days, while the state conducts further studies. The other turbine will be switched off at night but be allowed to remain in operation during the day, pending the additional studies.

Town officials said they have been working closely with state officials over recent months to assess the complaints. They said they decided to stop the turbines from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. several weeks ago, and that they have agreed to shut down one of the turbines until state officials complete their testing.

“My first reaction to this report is it’s about time,’’ said Eleanor Tillinghast, a steering committee member of Windwise ~ Massachusetts, which has opposed wind projects around the state. “People have been complaining about severe health effects almost as soon as the first turbine began operating. The effects have been severe and chronic. . . . This is happening all over the world.’’

The DEP findings come several months after a panel of independent scientists and doctors convened by the agency found little to no evidence that wind turbines pose a risk to the health of residents living near them.

That panel concluded that there is no rigorous research showing that churning turbines or the resulting flickering light and vibrations produce dizziness, nausea, depression, or anxiety - a set of symptoms that critics of wind power call “wind turbine syndrome.’’

The panel found limited evidence that a “very loud wind turbine could cause disrupted sleep, particularly in vulnerable populations, at a certain distance, while a very quiet wind turbine would not likely disrupt even the lightest of sleepers at that same distance.’’

“But there is not enough evidence to provide particular sound-pressure thresholds at which wind turbines cause sleep disruption,’’ it added.

The wind power critics cite a host of anecdotal evidence of dangers to residents living less than a mile from large turbines, such as those in Falmouth, where the first one was erected three years ago at a local waste treatment facility. They say the whirring of turbines can result in symptoms such as migraines, vertigo, motion sensitivity, and inner-ear damage, particularly in abutters who are 50 years old or older.

In Falmouth, where the wind project cost local residents $5 million and state and federal taxpayers another $10 million, neighbors said they were relieved by the results of the report.

Annie Cool, 53, a real estate broker who lives about 1,600 feet from the turbines, said she has trouble sleeping at night because the whirring sounds like “a boot in a dryer.’’

“This report is a long time in coming,’’ she said. “The town of Falmouth made a quick decision to place those turbines in a residential area, and when they realized it may have not been the best decision, rather than doing the right thing and moving the turbines, they went into a long, exhausted financial exercise to prove that the neighbors were crazy.’’

She added: “Do I feel a little vindicated by the report? Yes, because it shows we’re not crazy. But do I trust that the town and the state will do the right thing? Not on your life.’’

Todd Drummey, 48, a financial planner who lives 3,000 feet from the closest turbine in Falmouth, compared the noise of the turbines to jets and pile drivers, depending on the weather. He said shutting them down, at least temporarily, was a good first step. “But what I would really love to see is that they’re moved,’’ he said, adding he also has trouble sleeping at night.

The turbine being shut down will be turned on occasionally for testing, officials said. The other turbine will continue to operate during the day.

“I absolutely think this makes sense,’’ said Mary Pat Flynn, chairwoman of the Falmouth Board of Selectmen.

She said town officials could move the turbines, provide financial compensation to abutters, or consider ways to blunt the sound. “We have options besides shutting them down,’’ she said.

Kimmell noted that the Falmouth turbines are of an older generation than other turbines being installed around the state. He said their age, as well as their location, may make them louder than other turbines.

In a statement, state Senate President Therese Murray, a Plymouth Democrat, said she hopes the agency’s report brings residents relief, noting that the turbines have divided the community.

“As I’ve said in the past, I believe that industrial-size wind turbines do not belong in residential neighborhoods, but we should not remove wind energy from the renewable energy mix in Massachusetts,’’ she said. “Wind energy has the potential to provide our cities and towns with many environmental and cost-saving benefits. But we need to site these projects responsibly.’’

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2012/05/15/massachusetts-officials-recommend-falmouth-shut-down-turbines/mCPNKvUoq1IrdPClRygmWN/story.html

11May/120

Study Needs People Who Live Near Industrial Wind Turbines!

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

This study has been endorsed by Dr. Sarah Laurie, who directs the Waubra Foundation to publicize the adverse health effects of giant wind turbines and which campaigns for substantial setbacks from homes (e.g., 10 km).

If you know or anyone you know lives near a wind energy development, please consider participating in this research.

My name is Darryl Read, I am a fourth year psychology honours student at the University of New England in Australia. My research project involves recruiting residents who live near a proposed or established wind farm developments worldwide. My interest in this area of research began after speaking with rural residents living near Crookwell, New South Wales, the site of the oldest wind development in Australia. The conversations enabled me to gain an understanding of the range of issues surrounding wind farm developments. Following the conversations I began to read the relevant literature and it became clear that the articles failed to identify the issues and genuine concerns of the residents. My research is a completely independent project and therefore, not funded by government organisations who support developments. The aim of my study is investigate the range of issues surrounding developments and to provide a completely unbiased account of participants attitudes toward wind farm developments. To enable the findings of my research to be taken seriously the study will require around 200 to 300 participants. Residents who live near wind farm developments across the world are invited to participate in the study. Landscape Guardians groups from around Australia and the UK are very supportive of the research. The online questionnaire will take between 15 and 20 minutes to complete and participation will require completing the online survey before the end of August 2012. Participants who wish to complete the survey are required to click the arrow at the bottom of each page to move to the next. If you have any questions in relation to the questionnaire or if you have any comments you believe may assist the research, please send to my email address at darrylread@bigpond.com. Please feel free to distribute the survey link to other residents who are subject to wind farm developments. http://tinyurl.com/windstudyUNE

Thankyou for you time.

9May/120

Falmouth, Ma Shuts Down Wind Turbine 12 hours/day Over Health Problems

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

By SEAN TEEHAN
steehan@capecodonline.com
May 09, 2012
Wind turbines loomed heavily in town Monday night as selectmen and board of health members at separate meetings voted on measures meant to address residents' health concerns.Cape Cod Times/Steve Heaslip
FALMOUTH — Wind turbines loomed heavily in town Monday night as selectmen and board of health members at separate meetings voted on measures meant to address residents' health concerns.

Selectmen voted in favor of shutting down Wind 1, one of the town's two 1.65-megawatt turbines off Blacksmith Shop Road, from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. each day.

Stopping Wind 1's operation for 12 hours each day represents a compromise between the town and some people who live near the turbines and for more than a year have complained of nausea, vertigo and other health problems, said Mary Pat Flynn, chairman of the board of selectmen.

Top Photo

Mitigation efforts began last month when the Cambridge-based Consensus Building Institute, the firm hired by selectmen, began working with stakeholders — abutters, anti- and pro-turbine people and town officials — to gauge opinions of possible solutions. Residents opposed to the turbines wanted them turned off completely, Flynn said.

Next week, the firm will start the process of nominating people to serve on a committee responsible for making recommendations to selectmen. Shutting off Wind 1 for half of each day could begin as early as two weeks from now, Flynn said.

However, this action will further affect the turbines' revenue stream, which already dropped when selectmen ordered they shut off when they reach 23 mph or more, said Falmouth Wastewater Superintendent Gerald Potamis, who oversees the turbines.

"If they run half the time, they only produce ... half the power and only produce half the revenue," Potamis said.

The action does not go far enough, said Falmouth resident Malcolm Donald, a Wind 2 abutter.

"It escapes me why they're not shutting down Wind 2 from 7 (p.m.) to 7 (a.m.)" too, Donald said on Tuesday. "It's a start for entering into the consensus building, (but) the consensus building can drag on for months if not years."

Rather than attend Monday's selectmen's meeting, Donald went to the board of health's meeting, where members scheduled a public hearing for 7 p.m. May 24 to hear comments about the turbines' alleged health effects.

"We made a decision last night that we would set up a hearing "» to allow folks who believe they're being affected by the turbines to submit written testimony," said board member Stephen Rafferty on Tuesday.

Some people who attended the board of health meeting asserted that an abutter to the turbines recently attempted suicide because of ailments caused by the turbines, but board members cut off that discussion when those making the claim could not authenticate it, Rafferty said.

Board of health members will use testimony submitted to them as guidelines in deciding whether they should order an emergency shutdown of the turbines, said board member Jared Goldstone..

"I think it's something that's been building for a while," said Goldstone, who added that state officials at the Department of Environmental Protection have been largely mute in responding to town requests for guidance. "We have written letters to the state that haven't received direct replies."

Residents who submit written testimony before the hearing — specifically about negative health effects resulting from exposure to turbines — may summarize their points in front of the board, Goldstone said.

The board of health will accept written testimony until May 31.

http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120509/NEWS/205090314

6May/120

NO HEALTH-DESTROYING WIND TURBINES IN OUR HABITAT – Holland

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Published by Karl Voshaart on Apr 23, 2012


Target: Ministry of Economy, Agriculture and Innovation, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment,
Region: Netherlands
Background (Preamble):
We, the people of the Netherlands, are asking for support. In our densely populated country, they are planning huge wind farms next to our homes. In spite of all the reports about negative health aspects caused by industrial wind turbines, the requests for more wind farms are piling up.We are afraid that many people will get sick and therefore we want to ask the government to stop the planning of building more turbines.Apart from the health aspects, we are afraid that there will be a large environmental impact, no nature left and that we will not be able to leave because the houses become unmarketable.Therefore, we ask you to sign this petition in order to help us with our struggle.

Petition:
We, the people of the Netherlands, conclude that the wind turbines will be harmful to our HEALTH, our FINANCES, our NATURE and our SAFETY.Therefore we ask:That the Ministry of Economy, Agriculture and Innovation, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment, the Municipalities and the Provincial Governments to stop the building of wind turbine farms in our immediate environment right now.
http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/no-health-destroying-wind-turbines-in-our-habitat.html

Sign the petition
1Mar/120

David Cameron says countryside wind farms have been ‘wasteful of public money’

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

"We're cutting the subsidy to onshore wind because I think it has been over-subsidised and wasteful of public money," he said during weekly Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons. "The second thing we're doing is the Localism Act will give local communities a greater say over issues like wind turbines".

February 28, 2012 by Rowena Mason in The Telegraph

Wind farms built across the British countryside have been "over subsidised and wasteful of public money", David Cameron has said.

In his strongest ever criticism of green energy, the Prime Minister suggested too much taxpayer cash has been given to on-shore wind farms, which are now highly profitable for developers because of generous susbsidies.

"We're cutting the subsidy to onshore wind because I think it has been over-subsidised and wasteful of public money," he said during weekly Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons. "The second thing we're doing is the Localism Act will give local communities a greater say... [continue via Web link]

Web link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9114054/D...
29Feb/120

Congratulations OKH Historic Commission for your defeat of Dennis Industrial Wind Turbine

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Save Our Seashore
Wellfleet, MA

Mr. Peter Lomenzo
Chairman
Old Kings Highway Regional Historic District Commission
P.O. Box 140
Barnstable,  MA 02630

Dear Mr. Lomenzo and Members of the OKH Regional Historic District Commission:

We are writing to express our congratulations to the OKH Regional Historic District Commission and to Ms. Rose Austin for your recent success in opposing, and preventing, the construction of an industrial-scale wind turbine at the Aquacultural Research Corp (ARC) facility in Dennis, MA.

Although we recognize the importance of ARC to all of Cape Cod, including Wellfleet, we believe that the construction of this facility was not necessary and vital to the pursuit of its business and that it would have been inappropriate to have allowed ARC -- or any other entity -- to compromise the rural and historic character of Cape Cod in such a fundamental and permanent way.

The scenic landscape, the natural soundscape, the peaceful rural spirit and the unique historic character of Cape Cod are assets of inestimable value.  They are irreplaceable communal resources that do not belong to any individual, corporation or municipal government and they are essential to the identity of the region.

The residents of Cape Cod have recognized the value of these qualities of life for generations -- even before the days of Henry David Thoreau -- and have sought to preserve these attributes through the formation of the Old Kings Highway District Commission, the Cape Cod Commission, the National Seashore and dozens of other local, regional and national organizations dedicated to the same purpose.

As we all know, it was a precisely the same recognition of the value of these unique regional attributes that lead to the formation of the Martha's Vineyard Commission and the designation of the entire island of Nantucket as a national historic district in 1963.

We wish to inform you that we recognize that the OKH Regional Historic District Commission has withstood intense political pressure in defending these legitimate communal interests and has exhibited exemplary fortitude and integrity in its willingness to stand on principle and to be faithful to its founding purpose.

We would also like to express our sincere thanks, and our undying gratitude, to all of you for having the courage to stand up when it really matters.  You have set a wonderful example by asserting the legitimacy of your mandate and insisting that such considerations be accorded due respect in any current, or future, debate.

We will all sleep better knowing that you will continue to insist that the value of these communal resources be duly recognized, and considered, for any future project proposals of any kind which might have a similar impact on the region.

We would appreciate it if you would circulate a copy of this letter to each of your individual town committees for the OKH.

Again, our deepest thanks.

Sincerely,

Eric Bibler
President

Cc: Cape Cod Commission
Cc: Martha's Vineyard Commission
Cc: Nantucket BoS
Cc: Cape Cod National Seashore Advisory Commission
Cc: Barnstable County Commissioners
Cc: Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

14Feb/120

The Future of Wind Energy and it is Unsustainable

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

The following article is a primer of what happens after the massive financing of  wind energy and why it is actually unsustainable. Spain which has madly been at the forefront of the renewable energy boom, with its "free" wind and solar is shutting down all subsidies because "Fundamentally the Spanish electric system costs €5 billion to €6 billion a year more to run than they collect from consumers and this has been the case for many years". Already forward thinking areas of Spain...like " The autonomous community of Catalunya is a case in point. Its plans for designated zones supplying 800 MW of wind power, which had been delayed because of a legal challenge over environmental impact, will now have to be put on hold indefinitely." Instead of learning from this broken system that has built itself into a hole, Ken Salazar of the U.S.  Department of the Interior and Congress  are still providing massive funding to  Federal, State and Local Programs, which will be money losers and which countries time and again  find have adverse environmental impact!

http://social.windenergyupdate.com/turbine-supply-chain/spain-fit-suspension-knocks-wind-sector?utm_source=WEU%2BE-Brief%2B1402&utm_medium=WEU%2BE-Brief%2B1402&utm_campaign=2092

The Spanish government has called time on renewable energy with a law suspending feed-in tariffs for new projects from 2013. What is the likely impact on the renewable energy goliath's wind energy sector?

By Jason Deign in Barcelona

There is a lot of energy in El Hierro. Apart from the fact that an underwater volcano is erupting 2 km south of the smallest and most south-westerly of Spain’s Canary Islands, work is also underway on a project to turn it into the first fully renewable-energy powered island on earth.

The Gorona del Viento project will use five Enercon E-70 2.3 MW turbines to deliver 11.5 MW of energy to the island population and to a pumping station that carries water to the upper of two lagoons connected by a hydro power plant, for use when the wind drops.

The project is a feather in the cap of Spain’s renewable energy industry, which itself is a world leader, contributing to around 30% of the country’s power use a year. But outside the Canary Islands, the sector has just taken a hit.

Slamming on the brakes

Last month the recently elected People’s Party (Partido Popular, or PP) passed a Royal Decree indefinitely halting all subsidies for new renewable energy projects after the current inscription period runs, in 2013.

Only the Canary Islands, home to new Industry Minister José Manuel Soria, have been exempted from the decree.

This is just the latest in a long line of setbacks that the Spanish renewable energy sector has suffered, leading Industry Ministry spokesperson Emilio Jarillo Ibañez to downplay its impact.

“It is an ‘official’ moratorium, although in fact there was already a real moratorium in place because a lack of funding for developers,” he says. “We have not banned renewables. We have just temporarily suspended the incentive system.”

The government contends the measure will not affect the jobs of those currently engaged in renewable power generation because the law only applies to new projects after 2013.

Regarding manufacturers, Jarillo admits: “That’s another matter. But I get the feeling they had already scaled down in recent years without the need for a Royal Decree, and the more efficient industries had some time ago focused their production with a view to serving other markets.”

Not everyone agrees, of course. Javier García Breva, of the Spanish Renewables Foundation, has accused the government of wiping out a potential 300,000 jobs and €62 billion in investment.

The wind industry, which in the last year has provided more than 16% of Spain’s energy, will naturally be among those most affected.

Overdue repairs

In 2011 the Spanish wind market recorded its lowest-ever growth, at just 5.1%, with manufacturers having to export more than 90% of production to foreign markets, according to industry body the Asociación Empresarial Eólica (AEE).

And more than half of the 1,903 MW of new wind power registered to come online before 2013 will not meet the deadline for “reasons not attributable to the promoters,” said the association in a press statement.

The autonomous community of Catalunya is a case in point. Its plans for designated zones supplying 800 MW of wind power, which had been delayed because of a legal challenge over environmental impact, will now have to be put on hold indefinitely.

Some observers feel the moratorium on new renewable projects is needed to give the government a breathing space to fix Spain’s patently unsustainable energy framework, though.

“Fundamentally the Spanish electric system costs €5 billion to €6 billion a year more to run than they collect from consumers and this has been the case for many years,” says Tom Murley of HgCapital, an investment house active in the Spanish renewable market.

“The result? The government owes the utilities something in the order of €25 billion. It's called the tariff deficit because legally in the future they're supposed to increase their tariffs to consumers, to repay that amount to utilities.”

He adds: “It is simply unsustainable for Spain to continue to build new power generation capacity without doing something to eliminate the tariff deficit. For there to be a long-term industry in Spain, which there will be, they had to do something.

“This gives me renewed confidence that Spain is going to do something that makes sense.”
If Murley is right and this is indeed the first step in a process aimed at mending Spain’s broken energy system, then the next act should be interesting to watch as it will probably involve taking measures that are unpopular with the country’s powerful utilities.

Another scenario, voiced by many in the renewable energy sector, is that Soria is already in thrall to the electricity giants, which have been gunning for green power in recent months.

Heikki Willstedt Mesa, energy policy director at the AEE, does not think this is the case. “The current government has realised the tariff deficit is out of control,” he says.

“What has left us a bit perplexed is that we have been included when wind’s contribution to the deficit is minimal and our contribution in terms of economic activity and jobs is so great.”

8Feb/120

News Blast from John Droz!

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Friends:

“Why I Turned Against ‘Green’ Windpower” <<http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/turned-against-windpower>>.

More reports about greed energy economics:

“Electricity Costs - The Folly of Wind power” <<http://www.civitas.org.uk/economy/electricitycosts2012.pdf>>.

A superior three part series about the economic (and otherwise) foolishness of wind and solar <<http://www.aei.org/policy/energy-and-the-environment/alternative-energy/>>.

A good commentary about the foolishness of wind subsidies <<http://finance.townhall.com/columnists/maritanoon/2012/02/05/toppling_tax_dollars_for_turbines/page/full/>>.

“We need wind subsidies like we need VHS subsidies” is on the mark <<http://blog.heritage.org/2012/02/02/we-need-wind-subsidies-like-we-need-vhs-subsidies/>>.

Taxpayers take a hit subsidizing renewables <<http://nlpc.org/stories/2012/01/26/layoffs-bankruptcies-epidemic-gov%E2%80%99t-subsidies-industry-aka-renewables>>.

A wonderful, must read article about wind energy <<http://www.wind-watch.org/news/2012/01/20/against-the-wind-the-pursuit-of-clean-energy-has-relegated-ordinary-people-to-the-status-of-collateral-damage/>>.

Redefining green jobs <<http://bangordailynews.com/2012/01/24/opinion/contributors/time-to-redefine-green-jobs-in-community-context/>>.

Over 100 British lawmakers formally object to wind energy <<http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9061997/101-Tories-revolt-over-wind-farms.html>>. Here is there letter (of course it actually applies even more to offshore, which is far more expensive) <<http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/windpower/9061554/Full-letter-from-MPs-to-David-Cameron-on-wind-power-subsidies.html>>.

India To End a Tax Break for Wind Energy <<http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-17/india-may-end-tax-break-for-wind-farms-this-year-official-says.html>>.

Bonneville Power agrees to pay wind developers for electricity not received <<http://www.oregonlive.com/environment/index.ssf/2012/02/bonneville_power_administratio_3.html>>.

If Germany goes through with their foolish plan to phase out nuclear energy, this independent report concludes that it will cost them over Two Trillion dollars <<http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/17/us-siemens-energy-idUSTRE80G10920120117>>. Speaking of nuclear, please read this three part series (written by high school students!) <<http://www.gonuclear.net/blog/01062012-1042pm/lifting-veil-nuclear-paranoia-part-3>>.

More reports about turbine health matters:

Superior article about the origins of turbine setbacks <<http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/wind-ordinance-offset-debate/>>.

A good film with Dr. McMurty re turbine health consequences <<http://www.windtaskforce.org/video/video/show?id=4401701%3AVideo%3A35891&xgs=1&xg_source=msg_share_video>>.

Misc energy reports:

A massive critique of Germany’s failing energy policies by a PhD insider <<http://www.eike-klima-energie.eu/fileadmin/user_upload/Bilder_Dateien/Keil_Energiewende_gescheitert/2012_01_09_EIKE_Germa_energy_turnaround_english.pdf>>.

Vestas reports on massive layoffs <<http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-12/vestas-to-cut-2-335-jobs-worldwide-more-at-risk-in-u-s-this-year.html>>.

“Could Nuclear Power Solve Global Warming: the Affirmative Case” is an interesting technical paper in a peer-reviewed journal <<http://bravenewclimate.com/2012/01/14/nuclear-solve-greenhouse/>>.

This was written to supplement another good paper (different author) “Could Renewables Solve Global Warming: the Negative Case” <<http://www.notechmagazine.com/2011/05/can-renewables-power-consumer-societies.html>>

“Charles Manson Energy Butchery” (about turbine wildlife kills) <<http://www.masterresource.org/2012/01/killer-energy-wind/>>.

“Environmental Radicals: Go Home” <<http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/kathryn-marshall/joe-oliver-letter_b_1195805.html>>. This is an interesting dustup where a government official is taking on environmentalists <<http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/media-room/news-release/2012/1/3520>>.

The Ontario Federation of Agriculture speaks out againts wind energy <<http://www.ofa.on.ca/uploads/userfiles/files/ofa%20position%20statement%20on%20industrial%20wind%20turbines.pdf>>.

A fine article about an Australian wind project <<http://papundits.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/wind-power-australia-the-musselroe-wind-farm-travesty-in-tasmania/>>.

 

“EPA’s Sustainability Gambit “ <<http://dddusmma.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/epas-sustainability-gambit/>>.

Three good new reviews about WindFall, including one by Roger Ebert <<http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120201/REVIEWS/120209994>>, <<http://www.huffingtonpost.com/j-michael-welton/windfall-documentary-laura-israel_b_1246824.html>> and <<http://www.villagevoice.com/2012-02-01/film/windfall-film-review/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+articles%2Ffilm+%28Village+Voice+Film%29>>.

A good article about ABC’s position on turbine bird kills <<http://www.abcbirds.org/newsandreports/releases/110202.html>>.

America is getting close to energy independence, and it has nothing to do with wind energy <<http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-07/americans-gaining-energy-independence-with-u-s-as-top-producer.html>>.

“Offshore turbines ‘will pose a threat to nuclear subs fleet’” <<http://www.scotsman.com/news/environment/offshore_turbines_will_pose_a_threat_to_nuclear_subs_fleet_1_2099457>>

Some recent global warming articles of interest —

“How Green Zealots Are Destroying the Planet” <<http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2096277/Global-warming-James-Delingpole-claims-green-zealots-destroying-planet.html>>.

Germany’s top environmentalist turns skeptic is a significant development. See <<http://thegwpf.org/best-of-blogs/4867-germanys-top-environmentalist-turns-climate-sceptic.html>> and <<http://tinyurl.com/76nc5wn>>.

“Global Warming? No Natural Predictable Change” <<http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrybell/2012/01/10/global-warming-no-natural-predictable-climate-change/>>.

“How To Think Seriously About The Planet “ <<http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/reviews/green-philosophy-how-to-think-seriously-about-the-planet-by-roger-scruton-6288591.html?printService=print>>.

Some superior testimony from experts about AGW <<http://www.climatescienceinternational.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=612>>.

Global Warming — here is the take by 16 scientists <<http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204301404577171531838421366.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop>>.

Please pass this information on to other open-minded, science-oriented people. If anyone would like to be added to or removed from the email list, please let me know.

 

Thank you for your support.

john droz, jr.

aaprjohn@northnet.org

physicist & environmental advocate

Fellow: American Tradition Institute (<<http://www.atinstitute.org/>>)

3Feb/120

WINDFALL: A Cautionary Tale About Wind Power…Huffington Post

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

Huffington Post Posted: 02/ 1/2012 3:16 pm

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/j-michael-welton/windfall-documentary-laura-israel_b_1246824.html

Filmmaker Laura Israel isn't tilting at windmills -- but she does want to cast a critical eye in their direction.

And she's done that with Windfall -- her first documentary film, art-directed within an inch of its life -- and one that delivers a profound message:

Look before you leap into wind power.

"People who are living with these turbines nearby are developing hypertension, migraines and heart palpitations," she says. "There are some really spooky health effects, even with a turbine a mile away -- I've heard people say they can feel their heart beating at the same pace as the turbines."

2012-02-01-Windfall_still004copy.jpg

The effects of the turbines' low frequency sound are chilling -- nearby residents sleeping in basements, unable to stop the 24/7 noise and visual pollution. But the budding industry -- growing now at a startling 39 percent annually -- is choosing not to deal with them. "Instead of dealing with it, they're trying to discredit the people complaining," she says.

When the sun gets behind the blades of the turbines, an incessant and mechanical shadowy flicker is the result. Closing shades and curtains makes no difference. "It just doesn't stop," she says. "People say you don't get used to it -- you get sick."

2012-02-01-Windfall_still001copy.jpg

Windfall documents the effects of a proposal of a wind developer on residents of the town of Meredith, N.Y. Attracted at first by the green aspects and financial incentives that might boost their dying economy, many residents grew alarmed when they discovered the 400-foot-tall windmills would bring side effects they never imagined.

"People say it sounds like a jet that never lands," she says.

Sales people working for a contracting company usually approach a town and its elected officials, selling them on the idea and contracting for the use of their property. Contactors then move in to build infrastructure -- widening roads to transport the turbines, and installing transmission lines. Energy produced is usually owned by the large power companies -- sometimes Duke Energy, General Electric or Deepwater.

"The landowner profits a little bit, and the town a little bit -- if they make a good deal," Israel says. "The companies profit most, because most of the benefits come from federal subsidies to build and to sell wind energy for more money."

2012-02-01-Windfall_still002copy.jpg

The intent of "Windfall," which opens in Manhattan at the Quad Cinema on Friday, Feb. 3 is to open up the topic to communities nationwide.

"I want to create discussion and encourage people to look at this industrial development for what it is -- industrial development," she says. "I want them to discuss it in a more balanced way."

Don Quixote, she's not. And she's certainly produced an eye-opener of a film.

For more on Windfall, go to http://windfallthemovie.com/index_1.html.

12Oct/110

hearing on the Wind Siting Reform Act (WESRA) Oct 20 2011

Posted by venturen

The hearing on the Wind Siting Reform Act (WESRA) will be on Thursday, October, 20th in the Barnstable High School Knight Auditorium (744 West Main Street, Hyannis, MA) starting at 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

It is critically important that hundreds of people to attend the hearing.

Hundreds of people must also to submit written comments to the full Joint Committee.

 

IF THIS BILL BECOMES LAW, IT WILL ADVERSELY IMPACT YOU, YOUR FAMILY AND YOUR FRIENDS. WE CAN NOT ALLOW ALL THAT WE HAVE WORKED ON TOGETHER TO BE LOST. PLEASE TAKE ACTION TODAY!

***************************************************************************************************************

1.    EMAIL WRITTEN COMMENTS OPPOSING WESRA BY OCTOBER 20TH

2.    ATTEND THE HEARING ON THURSDAY, OCTOBER 20TH OF (WESRA) AT BARNSTABLE HIGH SCHOOL KNIGHT AUDITORIUM (744 WEST MAIN STREET, HYANNIS, MA) - 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

***************************************************************************************************************

 

EMAIL WRITTEN COMMENTS OPPOSING WESRA BY OCTOBER 20TH:

 

We sincerely need every person to submit written comments. The message we ask you to convey is that this is a flawed bill and no amendment can fix the language in the bill. The bill should be killed and not even come up for a vote.

 

Please see attached BACKGROUND INFORMATION concerning the bullet points about WESRA that was sent by Wind Wise - Massachusetts to town boards

(There is a template letter at the end of this email message.)

 

  • Please address your written comments to the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities & Energy

Email comments to:

Jessica Schifano, J.D., M.P.H.,Research Director,

Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy

jessica.schifano@mahouse.gov

AND TELL HER THAT THIS EMAIL IS FOR THE FULL JOINT COMMITTEE TO READ

 

  • Please copy House and Senate Leadership:

Therese Murray President of the Senate - Email: Therese.Murray@masenate.gov

Robert A. DeLeo Speaker of the House - Email: Robert.DeLeo@mahouse.gov

 

 

ATTEND THE HEARING ON THURSDAY, OCTOBER 20TH OF (WESRA) AT BARNSTABLE HIGH SCHOOL KNIGHT AUDITORIUM (744 WEST MAIN STREET, HYANNIS, MA)

STARTING AT 10:00 AM;

AND ALSO TESTIFY ABOUT YOUR OPPOSITION TO WESRA:

 

  1. BEING THERE IS MOST IMPORTANT!
  2. IF YOU ARE WILLING TO SPEAK IT IS GREAT, BUT IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO BE THERE EVEN IF YOU WILL NOT SPEAK

 

We really need to show a unified force of opposition to this bill. This is the day that hopefully will make a difference. We need the ‘cast of thousands’ to show up at Barnstable High School Knight Auditorium (744 West Main Street, Hyannis, Ma) On Thursday, October 20th starting at 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 pm (Free parking)

 

-      Josie is a Windwise ~ Cape Cod Board Member. Please include your name, your email   address, your cell phone number, indicate if you will speak and what topic/s you will address.

-      Topics may be: loss of local control, loss of environmental law protection, loss of our day in court, adverse health impacts, adverse impact to business (economics 101 would indicate that there will be higher electricity rates and taxes - business can not afford this), no CO2 reduction, adverse impacts to tourism, loss of jobs, loss of real estate value, community fracture, loss of quality of life [living in an industrial zone instead of a semi-rural environment] and let’s work together to find responsible solutions that actually work, or any other topic you feel is important

  • If you are terrified to speak, we can help you so that you are able to say something small that will have a big impact, and if you do not want to speak, please be there and hold signs. Numbers do count!
  • Write out your comments ahead of time in order to make the strongest statement you can.
  • Your written comments can be longer than what your oral testimony is and they ask that you hand in your testimony after you speak
  • If you do not want to speak, you may hand in written comments
  • Please arrive at 9:30 AM and sign up to speak (They will be hearing testimony on 6 bills this day, please sign up to speak for the bills you would like to address. See attached document for more information.) RIGHT NOW THE BILLS ARE: S-1666, H-01775 and H-01759
  • Please hold signs and bring your own signs
  • We understand from the testimony in the Berkshires that the subcommittee appeared moved by personal stories, did not understand the adverse health impacts and seemed to think that minor tweaks to the language of the bill could fix the bill. Let’s educate this subcommittee so they leave CCCC knowing the truth.
  • We are told that you will have 3 minutes to speak. We understand that they gave people in the Berkshires a little more time than this.

 

TEMPLATE LETTER BELOW, PLEASE CUSTOMIZE AS APPRORIATE (it is more effective if you do customize this letter.):

 

Email to: jessica.schifano@mahouse.gov

CC: Therese.Murray@masenate.gov, Robert.DeLeo@mahouse.gov

and your Representative and Senator that can be found at the following link: http://www.malegislature.gov/

 

Subject: Bills S.1666 and H.1775 - Wind Siting Reform Act - Voicing Opposition to Bills

 

In body of email:

Dear Jessica,

Please forward this email to all members of the Joint Committee on Telecommunication, Utilities, and Energy

Please confirm via email to me that this has been accomplished.

Thank you.

Your address
Date

Honorable Senator Benjamin Downing, Senate Chair
Honorable John D. Keenan, House Chair
Members of the Joint Committee on
Telecommunication, Utilities, and Energy

Dear Co-Chairs and members of the Joint Committee:

I wish to submit written testimony opposed to Bills S.1666 and H.1775 – “An Act relative to comprehensive siting reform for land based wind projects” - also referred to as the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act (WESRA).

I am opposed to WESRA because:

- it will take away local control and 200 years of law regarding citizen and community rights

- it will deny the chance by Town residents to take an “up” or “down” vote on a wind project in Town meeting.

- it will require the appointment of a Local Wind Energy Permitting Board by Selectmen.

- the appointed Local Wind Energy Permitting Board will be able to waive zoning and non-zoning requirements of the municipality’s local laws, regulations, policies or other regulatory requirements.

- any appeals by citizens of an approved wind permit will be made in front of the State Energy Facilities Siting Board whose members are appointed by the Governor and support his political agenda.

- an appeal by citizens to the Superior Court of the Commonwealth will not be allowed. However wind developers may appeal any decision to the courts and to the State Energy Facilities Siting Board.

There is no language that will fix this bill because the premise of the bill is flawed.

 

I further ask that you do the right thing and do not move forward with this legislation, but rather I ask that you invoke the Precautionary Principal and call for a one year moratorium so there may be more research to determine how much further than 1.24 miles from the property line of the nearest neighbor wind turbines need to be sited in order to not adversely impact the health and safety of MA residents and visitors.
Sincerely,

Your Signature

 

27May/110

PLEASE SIGN OUR PETITION! CVEC & CLC

Posted by venturen

PLEASE SIGN OUR PETITION!

To All Interested Parties,

I don't know how closely you have been following the recent attempts of various members of the public to insist that the Cape Light Compact and the Cape and Vineyard Electric Cooperative make full disclosure of substantive information and to explain their relationship and their recent actions.

Both organizations have engaged in questionable actions and both of them have stonewalled all efforts to obtain any information about them.  They have been openly hostile and defiant to any inquiry and they have resolutely obstructed all such attempts.

There is considerable concern now on the part of many members of the public, some of the Barnstable County Commissioners, Delegates to the Barnstable County Assembly, members of town governments and sister county agencies, even Directors of CVEC and CLC about the fact that these questions remain unanswered.  CLC and CVEC have refused to answer the same questions, even when those questions are put to them by these official parties.

We have been told that it is important that the Commissioners and the Delegates understand that these concerns are not narrow or self-serving interests of a small faction and that these elected representatives need to hear from more of their constituents in Barnstable County.

To that end, we have put together a petition, which we hope that you will sign and circulate widely, encouraging others to sign.  Our goal is to collect 1000 signatures by Tuesday.  The process of signing the petition takes less than a minute.

Our fundamental goal is to preserve, to encourage and to promote, the core values of openness, transparency, accountability and public participation in government.  To achieve that end, we are asking the Barnstable County government to take an active role in overseeing the activities of both CLC and CVEC by conducting a full investigation and scheduling hearings to force CLC and CVEC to answer questions from Commissioners, the Delegates and the public.

Please consider signing our petition and making every effort to help us to achieve our goal.  We believe that this is a topic of vital importance to every resident of Barnstable County.  Time is of the essence.

Many thanks.

Eric Bibler

--------------------

The petition:   Investigation and Audit of CLC / CVEC

 

16Mar/110

High Court date set for ‘nuisance turbines’ hearing

Posted by venturen

By SHARON PELL
Published on Tuesday 15 March 2011 07:45

ALL eyes will be on Deeping St Nicholas this summer when a landmark case on noise created by wind turbines reaches the High Court.

A date has finally been set for Jane and Julian Davis to have their say on turbines which they claim have forced them out of their home.

Their legal bid, which is thought to be one of the first private nuisance cases brought against a wind farm, will be heard in the High Court from July 4 and has been scheduled to run for ten days.

Mrs Davis said: “We have done our witness statements, which run into many thousands of words, the rest of the witness statements have been put together and there are a lot of experts looking at the noise issues.

“It would be nice to think we could get some kind of outcome where they stop the noise so we can go home.”

Mr and Mrs Davis’ farm is just 1,000 metres from the wind farm which went “live” in 2006.

The couple claim they were left unable to sleep from the noise coming from eight 100-metre turbines and they were forced to move into rented accomodation in Spalding.

Mrs Davis has previously described the noise as a constant low humming during the day and says the turbines make the sound of a helicopter landing during high winds or when the air pressure changes due to cooling in the evening.

However, the couple have insisted they are not against wind turbines in principle.

Mrs Davis says she is “cautiously optimistic” about their ongoing battle being used as a test case for other campaigners across the country.

The Deeping St Nicholas site will also become the focus of an international audience next month.

A four-day conference is taking place in Rome next month where delegates will be discussing issues surrounding wind turbine noise.

“About 100 academic papers are being presented to that conference,” said Mrs Davis. “Experts have used our case for 27 of them. They will be discussing knowledge gained at Deeping St Nicholas.”

Mrs Davis estimates there will be about 300 people attending the conference.

She said many visitors still call at the farm, where her husband still works on a daily basis.

http://www.spaldingtoday.co.uk/news/crime/courts/high_court_date_set_for_nuisance_turbines_hearing_1_2500008

25Jan/110

CVEC Joins The “Cape and Islands Wind Disinformation Network”

Posted by venturen

Subject: CVEC Joins The "Cape and Islands Wind Disinformation Network"

Save Our Seashore
Wellfleet, MA

Brewster Planning Board
Selectmen
Finance Committee
Tax Assessor
Health Department

Brewster, MA 02691

25 January 2011

CVEC Joins The "Cape and Islands Wind Disinformation Network"

After numerous unsuccessful attempts to obtain meeting minutes and other relevant public documents from CVEC, Save Our Seashore, following established formal procedure, filed an appeal with the Public Records Division of the Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth.   The Staff Attorney is now pursuing this request on our behalf.

Notwithstanding the provisions of MA Open Meeting Law regarding the maintenance and timely filing of minutes for public meetings, CVEC has not published any minutes since October of 2009.

Appeal to Public Records Division -- Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth

After we filed our appeal (and copied her on the letter to the Public Records Division),  Ms. Downey finally responded, saying that the minutes have "not yet been compiled."  This is unacceptable as it does not comply with the requirements of the Open Meeting Law or Public Records Law which require the timely filing of minutes, and the prompt provision of draft minutes, notes and other materials to any member of the public, upon request, as soon as a meeting has concluded.  In answer, we provided Ms. Downey with copies of both of the applicable statutes and reiterated our request.

Save Our Seashore had sought minutes from November, December and January (if applicable) and basic financial information in the wake of comments by Mr. Mark Zielinski, Treasurer, and Ms. Maggie Downey, Clerk, at a recent public meeting of the Dennis Water Commission.  Mr. Zielinski and Ms. Downey told the DWD that CVEC could no longer provide the same level of financial support for their proposed project that they had previously promised.

In addition, the aforementioned CVEC officials made a series of comments that called into question CVEC's ongoing commitment to wind energy projects; the security of its financial position; and its ability to raise financing for Brewster, or any other wind energy project.

In particular, the officials noted that "the envirionment for wind energy on the Cape had changed"; that financing had become more difficult to obtain; and that two previously arranged financings in the amount of $10 million each, for Harwich and Brewster, had fallen through.

The CVEC representatives noted that they had spent significant sums of money on projects which failed to come to fruition -- and likewise on the Brewster project.   They characterized CVEC as having a single-minded focus on the Brewster project -- presumably to recover their sunk costs -- and made veiled references to significant changes in policy, or strategic direction -- or both -- on the part of CVEC's Board of Directors.

Qualifications / Fitness for Duty

Since CVEC has applied for a Special Permit from the Town of Brewster to own, operate and manage a multi-million dollar industrial wind energy facility there, on land leased from the Town of Brewster, we think that questions regarding CVEC's financial position; its ongoing commitment to wind energy; its ability to raise financing; its prior experience and competency to manage such a project; its plan for decommissioning of the facility and its ability to meet the associated financial expense of doing so; its plan for mitigation of adverse impacts and the mechanism it proposes for addressing complaints; its attention to safety issues; and the level of support that management currently enjoys from its Board of Directors; are all highly relevant issues.

It seems to us that the easiest way for CVEC to allay these concerns would simply be to provide credible and complete answers that serve to dispel such doubts.  This, CVEC has repeatedly declined to do.

CVEC's failure to maintain, or to provide, minutes and other basic information on a timely basis, or upon direct request, in compliance with applicable laws, does not inspire confidence in its ability to run a complex, multi-million dollar industrial project.

CVEC's refusal to answer fundamental questions regarding its proposal is troubling since one would presume that if they had comforting answers to these questions, they would provide them.

CVEC's failure to respond to such routine inquiries also raises doubt as to their future willingness and ability to respond to inevitable complaints about noise and other adverse impacts from the operation of the two 400-foot wind turbines.

CVEC's failure to address direct questions regarding its apparent neglect to follow well-established safety precautions to protect citizens, businesses, employees, recreational users and motorists raises questions about the level of its knowledge of such issues and the extent of its commitment to public safety.  Additionally, it raises the possibility that the company could be sued, at some future date, for gross negligence or neglect.

Complaints and Mitigation / Please Hold

It is hard to imagine that this situation will be much improved once the project is implemented, if approved, since the current proposal provides that all complaints would be registered with the Town of Brewster, which, in turn, would have to communicate with CVEC and with a specialized contractor that CVEC would hire to run the operation.  One presumes that Mr. Zielinski and Ms. Downey would retain their day jobs as County Administrator and Assistant County Administrator, respectively, of Barnstable County, and manage the affairs of the Brewster project on an ad hoc basis.

Whatever else happens, one would hope that some system of hard and fast accountability is incorporated into the Town's agreement with CVEC since it is Brewster's citizens who will suffer the "collateral damage" from the operation of the wind turbine and, as we have seen from installations in Falmouth and all over the world, the temptation to ignore, or stonewall, complaints -- and keep operating the wind turbines for the revenue -- is almost irresistible.   "Mitigation" is almost always, and everywhere, all talk and no action.

False and Grossly Misleading Statements / Repeated Denials of Established Fact

As we have previously noted, some CVEC representatives, including Ms. Downey, have made repeated public statements that are either knowingly false, grossly misleading or wholly ignorant of the vast body of research concerning the adverse impacts of industrial wind turbines.  CVEC representatives continue to make these statements notwithstanding the fact that numerous individuals and organizations have pointed out to them that their statements are inconsistent with the known facts.

"No Evidence of Adverse Health Effects" / "No Evidence of Adverse Effect on Property Values"

For example, at a recent informational meeting, Ms. Downey declared that "there is no evidence of health effects arising from infra-sound."

Additionally, Ms. Downey declared that "there is no evidence of an effect on the value or sale of property,” Downey said. “I’ve heard anecdotal but I can’t work in that world. I have to work in the world of concrete facts.

Both of these statements are false, as Ms. Downey surely knows.

Save Our Seashore, other groups and individual citizens have provided the Town of Brewster and CVEC with extensive documentation of the harmful effects of wind turbine noise, including infrasound, from independent, objective technical and scientific sources -- as opposed to the information that CVEC has provided in support of its claims, virtually all of which has been provided by the American Wind Energy Association, a wind energy lobbyist, or other sources that have been widely discredited.

Time and again, CVEC and its spokespersons resort to citing the same handful of flawed sources as a bulwark to keep the vast tide of independent research at bay.  It is grossly irresponsible of CVEC to continue this practice long after the flaws of their sources, including their questionable methods and origins, have been pointed out to them by numerous parties.

Ms. Lilli Green also provided the Brewster Planning Board with a copy of the information that she had previous y provided to the MA Department of Health on the topic of adverse health and safety impacts -- enough material to fill two six inch binders.

Additionally, many of the same parties, including Save Our Seashore, and numerous private citizens have provided the Planning Board with extensive documentation of the significantly adverse impact of wind turbine installations upon property values in the form of various articles and press reports from around the world and multiple property impact studies performed by licensed real estate appraisers to assess damage from specific projects.

We provided the Planning Board (and CVEC) with numerous first person testimonials and we even provided them with a copy of an article from the journal of the American Bar Association noting that lawsuits for damages from wind turbine noise have become a growth industry.

CVEC, as the applicant under the Special Permit process, should have received copies of all of this information from the Town of Brewster.  They cannot be ignorant of such information; and it does not do them credit to deny it.

False Representations of the Affected Area and the Impact of the Project

Even more troubling are the many false, and misleading, misrepresentations that CVEC representatives have made in order to garner support for the project.

For example, as a recent article in the Cape Cod Times illustrates, CVEC representatives have habitually misrepresented the potential impact of the project upon the residents of Brewster.

CVEC representatives have repeatedly stated -- as do all of their formal informational materials that they have offered to the public and that the Town of Brewster has published on its official website -- that "there are only seven homes within a half mile of the turbines" and that "the turbines are in a relatively empty corner of town."

But CVEC has neglect to mention that one of those "homes" is the Woodlands Assisted Living Community, which houses numerous elderly, full-time residents in several apartments and which has the ability to house up to 59 elderly residents at full capacity.

CVEC also has neglected to mention that the Woodlands center has the same owner, and shares the same private access with, the Pleasant Bay Nursing and Retirement Center, whose purpose is to care for patients (most of them elderly) who cannot care for themselves.  Pleasant Bay has 135 beds for ailing residents, most of them elderly, who are recuperating from surgery or otherwise cannot care for themselves.

CVEC counts Woodlands -- capacity 59 beds -- as one of the seven "homes" or "residences" within a half-mile radius of the wind turbines.  CVEC ignores Pleasant Bay because it is approximately 200 feet beyond the arbitrary half-mile mark, but one presumes that this would be "home" or "residence" Number 8 (capacity 135 beds) if it were a few feet closer to the 40 story industrial machines.

CVEC doesn't even mention these facilities, other than to characterize one of them as one of a handful of "residences"; but if these two facilities which straddle the half-mile mark were properly acknowledged, the potential number of people residing in this "home" at an approximate distance of 1//2 mile would truthfully be reported as 194 occupants.

Furthermore, if CVEC were honest -- and if they were willing to read, or acknowledge, any of the abundant research on the adverse health impacts of wind turbine noise, especially from infrasound -- they might have concluded that the residents of these two facilities were at high risk of experiencing serious health problems for the following reasons:

1) The residents of these two facilities are all, by definition, either elderly or suffering from poor health -- or both.  That is why they are there.

2) Research suggests (see Kamperman and James) that the elderly may be more susceptible to adverse health impacts from wind turbine noise than younger members of the population.

3) Several clinical studies and peer reviewed papers by Dr. Nina Pierpont (whose book was, indeed, peer reviewed, by they way); Dr. Michael Nissenbaum; Dr. Robert McMurtry; Dr. Alec Salt, and others have demonstrated that wind turbine noise does indeed produce serious, harmful effects over varying, but substantial distances and that children and the elderly are often particularly acutely affected.

4) New research (by Dr. Sarah Laurie and others) in Australia suggests that wind turbine noise may have a pronounced adverse effect upon blood pressure and normal heart function.

5) The World Health Organization has stated that symptoms such as sleep deprivation, elevated blood pressure, anxiousness and other symptoms do constitute, or produce, significant adverse health impacts over time.  Additionally, the WHO has published very stringent recommended tolerances for night time noise, particularly in rural areas.

CVEC, its spokespersons and the Town of Brewster have all of this information at their disposal -- because concerned citizens have gone to great lengths to attempt to educate them to all of these serious harms.

I can tell you, as a practicing EMT, that subjecting elderly patients to any stimulus that raises their blood pressure or disregulates their normal heart function would not be beneficial to them.  But the main point is that CVEC's comments are beyond disingenuous: they are fundamentally dishonest.  Such dishonesty calls into question their commitment to operating the facility and a safe and sound manner and whether the Town of Brewster should trust them.

We are at a loss to understand why the owner of the facilities -- Woodlands and Pleasant Bay -- has not taken more aggressive action to protect the viability of his business, and the health of his patrons, but we are concerned for them all, nonetheless.   Perhaps, as with many other wind installations in places like Falmouth and around the world, the owner will put his faith in the reassurances of the proponents of the project -- including CVEC and the Board of Selectmen -- only to discover, too late, that such faith was unwarranted.

Here is a link to a recent article reporting all of the comments referenced above:   Brewster turbine plan's green benefits touted

Operating in "an Empty Corner of Town, an Industrial Park"

CVEC representatives have also repeatedly stated that the project will be operated "in a relatively empty corner of town" and in "an industrial park"; but they have declined to mention that the standard "ice throw" hazard zones and the "clear area" and the "evacuation area" prescribed by the manufacturer will shadow Route 6, local roads, numerous businesses and parking lots, a driving range and a municipal golf course, subjecting them all to potential hazard.

Ms. Liz Argo, a paid spokesperson for CVEC on the Brewster project, wrote an Op Ed in November (in which she neglected to reveal her association with CVEC), urging adoption of the project to help "bring the troops home" -- even though she has attended at least three public forums where the presenters displayed official U.S. statistics demonstrating that only 1% of electricity is produced by burning oil (and that virtually all of our fuels for electricity are sourced in the U.S. or Canada).

Erecting industrial wind turbines in Brewster cannot possibly have even an infinitesimal impact on our "energy independence" from foreign oil or help us to "bring the troops home" -- as Ms. Argo knows.

Ms. Argo has also repeatedly stated that the project as "extremely well sited" because of its proximity to Route 6 and because the nearest resident is 1800 feet away, a distance that she characterizes as ample -- despite an abundance of evidence to the contrary (the same evidence that, according to Ms. Downey, simply does not exist).

Ms Argo maintains that the proximity of the wind turbines to Route 6  make the project "undeniably well-sited" because the noise from Route 6 will help to mask any offending noise from the wind turbine.

But Ms. Argo neglects to mention that one of the wind turbines will be so close to the road that it will place Route 6 within the perimeter prescribed by most wind turbine manufacturers (including GE Energy) and German regulatory authorities as a "hazard zone" from ice throw.

Additionally, the wind turbines will place much of Route 6 -- not to mention numerous other roads and facilities -- at risk within the "stay clear" area and "evacuation area" prescribed by the manufacturer, the latter in the case of fire or malfunction.  This is something to think about since Cape Cod is vulnerable from hurricanes; since wind turbines are vulnerable to lightning strikes; and since Route 6 is the major artery on the Cape and a key evacuation route.

Ms. Argo has argued that these precautions are routinely violated in the virtually unregulated industry of industrial wind, pointing out numerous examples where operators have ignored them.  Everyone else does it.  Why not Brewster?

Ms. Argo also argues that fires, accidents, thrown blades, mechanical malfunction and ice throw are all relatively rare occurrences in the normal course of operation and are not a cause for undue concern.  We argue that the record shows that there have been numerous spectacular failures of one kind or another.   And we ask Ms. Argo: "Why, then, do we wear seat belts when driving to the corner grocery store?"

"Route 6 Will 'Mask the Noise' from the Wind Turbines"

Although Ms. Argo points to Route 6 as a source of noise which will mitigate the adverse health impacts of the wind turbines, she neglects to mention how this can possibly be of any benefit during the night, or during the off-season, at times when Route 6 is lightly traveled.  Perhaps Ms. Argo may want to provide some information on traffic density on Route 6 -- at appropriate times of day -- to support this fanciful notion.

I recently drove Route 6 past Brewster, from Barnstable to Wellfleet at 9:30 p.m. on a Thursday and encountered only a handful of other vehicles on the entire trip.  I even got a warning ticket in Eastham for doing 52 miles an hour in a 40 mile an hour zone.  As I explained to the officer (after thanking him for giving me a break), it's hard sometimes to realize how fast you are going on an empty road.

Therefore, I'm skeptical that anyone trying to sleep in Brewster during the night time hours of January (or even June) could expect much relief from "the traffic noise on Route 6."

Nor does the available research support Ms. Argo's contention that traffic noise has any significant "masking" effect upon wind turbine noise.

In fact, to the contrary, the opposite is true: all available research (the research that doesn't exist) suggests that wind turbine noise has an ability to penetrate other forms of ambient noise and to be heard and perceived by "receptors" -- and to impact them severely -- notwithstanding the competition.  For the uninitiated, "receptors" is the euphemism that wind energy proponents use for people -- like the elderly people at Woodlands and Pleasant Bay or those currently suffering from the "obsolete" (again, according to Ms. Argo) wind turbines in Falmouth -- who are subjected to the noise.

The Cape is "Wealthy In Wind" (But the Pursuit of It Impoverishes Us All)

Ms. Argo urges her readers to embrace the project in Brewster -- and other projects throughout the Cape -- arguing that "the Cape is wealthy in wind."

But Ms. Argo neglects to mention that in order to mine that wealth -- to "harness the wind" -- the wind energy developers in Brewster, and elsewhere, invariably appropriate resources that do not belong to them:

  • They deface the scenic landscape of Cape Cod with giant, kinetic, industrial structures -- 40 and 50 stories high -- that are "out-of-character" and "out-of-scale" with the landscape - two notable violations of the Design Guidelines for Large Structures published by Cape Cod Commission (but ignored by CVEC, Brewster and the Commission itself in the rush to harness the perceived "wealth" in the wind which, truth be told, is really no more than a mirage).
  • They invade -- or attempt to invade, as in the case of CVEC -- historic preservation areas.  As we know, after having had their plans thwarted on these grounds previously, CVEC has even vowed to seek special legislation from Beacon Hill to exempt wind 40 and 50 story wind turbines from review based upon their impact on historic districts.   What clearer indication could there be of the developer's intent to appropriate resources that don't belong to him than such a brazen ploy to steal those resources, outright, broad daylight, in this fashion?
  • They subject residents to untold miseries of rhythmic, industrial, unending noise, 24 hours a day, and a host of serious adverse health consequences, including sleep deprivation; headaches; ringing in the ears; pressure in the ears; elevated blood pressure; anxiety and depression -- just to name a few.

    Ms. Argo, and other proponents, dismiss these symptoms as "mere annoyance" that does not constitute a "medical diagnosis."  When residents of Falmouth stand to testify, saying "Let me tell you what it's like at MY house,"  Ms. Argo, Ms. Downey and the other representatives of the developers dismiss their first-person accounts as "merely anecdotal;" "not peer reviewed;" and "not part of the world of concrete facts" -- as if we are to dismiss the descriptions of the victims as having no relevance.

    Kindly refer to the tables of figure compiled by our acoustic consultants, they say, which demonstrate, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that OUR wind turbine, with its "new and improved technology" will be whisper quiet.  No louder than a refrigerator.  We promise.

  • They lay waste to fragile habitats and conservation areas, killing birds and bats and -- even worse -- driving wildlife off or severely compromising their ability to nest and hunt because of the disruptive, chronic noise.
  • They subject enormous areas to an intense strobe-like effect at various times of day, when the sun is low in the sky -- so intense that it is easily perceived through closed eye lids; so intense that people have been known to tape heavy canvas to their windows or shove towels under door jambs in an effort to achieve some relief.

    Ms. Argo and others confidently assert that there is no evidence that this intense "flicker pattern" triggers epileptic fits -- that's a relief.  But they ignore the sheer hell of it for any innocent citizen who can no longer enjoy a beer on his deck, read a book in his living room, play catch in the backyard with his twelve year old son, enjoy a round of golf after work, drive home walk the dog at certain hours of the day.

    Instead, Ms. Argo and other industry spokespersons -- on behalf of CVEC and the Board of Selectmen of Brewster --  prefer to lecture us about how many hours a year we should be willing to subject ourselves to this outrage -- for their sake -- and to pontificate about whether the "industry standard" (invariable a made up number) for flicker is 10 hours, 30 hours or 50 hours per year.

    Or, when not confidently informing us how many hours per year we shoudl be willing to endure -- spread out into convenient 15 to 30 minute episodes over numerous days -- just to reinforce the idea that we have completely lost control over our lives -- Ms. Argo and other spokespersons tell us that, in any event, the problem is "easily mitigated" by planting a few trees and installing some blinds -- notwithstanding the fact, yet again, that this assertion in pure fiction, unsupported by the evidence.

  • Wind turbines have a long-proven history of decimating nearby property values -- and with good reason, since the value of any property is a reflection of its "desirability" to a potential purchaser.

    No one in their right mind would argue that adding a 400 foot billboard -- or two -- to the neighborhood improves the desirability of property there; nor would the Town of Brewster, or the Cape Cod Commission, for that matter, ever allow a private developer, or even the Town itself, to erect such a monstrosity, no matter what the projected rent to the owner!

    Industrial wind turbines -- with flashing red FAA beacons and 7 ton blades that move at over 150 mph -- are much, much worse than billboards -- and much bigger, too -- for all of the reasons listed above.  Yet the proponents argue that they may even increase property values and increase tourism, too, as the rubes from off Cape come to gawk at the machines.

    Residents in Falmouth and hundreds of other locations can attest to the dramatic decline in their quality of life -- irrespective of whether or not "Wind Turbine Syndrome" is officially recognized as a bona fide "medical diagnosis" or merely constitutes an "annoyance."  Potential buyers understandably shy away from such property.  Why purchase a house that is bedeviled by a wind turbine when you can just as easily search elsewhere for one that isn't?  Ask any real estate agent in the vicinity of an industrial wind energy installation and they will tell you: people don't even want to look a these properties; and real estate agents don't want to waste their time showing them.

    Although these facts are bolstered by comprehensive property impact studies, this information, as far as the proponents are concerned, is "merely anecdotal," and therefore of no value.

  • Legitimate Uses of Land and Property Rights.   Residential property use; scenic and historic preservation; recreation; natural conservation -- these are all legitimate uses of property that define Cape Cod.  In fact, these are the very uses of land, and the very values, which the Cape Cod Commission is sworn to preserve, protect and uphold.

    Where is it written, anywhere in the Charter of the Cape Cod Commission, in the founding legislation of the National Seashore, in the bylaws of the Town of Brewster  -- anywhere -- that industrialization of the Cape through wind energy -- using 40 and 50 story machines -- is a goal that takes precedence over all others?

    Where is it written that these land uses are illegitimate and secondary, that they must bow to wind energy, that they are no as important to the "unique character and special charm of the Cape" (to quote the Cape Cod Commission's Design Guidelines, yet again)....as industrial wind energy?

    Where is it written that a private developer; an electric cooperative; a Town; or a national park superintendent should be allowed to ride rough shod over the legitimate interests, and long-cherished values, of multiple generations of citizens on Cape Cod?

    Where is the language in the Special Permit bylaws of the Town of Brewster that obligates any other community or property interest to submit to such insidious and unhealthy noise; to tolerate one minute of intense, virtually unbearable "flicker"; to suffer gladly the precipitate decline in his quality of life, his health or the value of his property?

    And finally, where is it written that individual citizens, property owners, habitual visitors and health victims -- including the "collateral damage," in Falmouth -- should have to skip their insurance payments, drain their bank accounts of liquidate their retirement funds in order to hire lawyers and consultants to prove the harm -- and to get the authorities to actually do something about it?

    Is it not for the Applicant -- or the Operator -- to prove the absence of harm -- beyond a shadow of a doubt -- and to cease and desist operations if he cannot control it?

Wealthy in wind indeed!

Undoubtedly, this is a statement whose truth depends entirely upon your point of view: namely, whether you are collecting the tax credits, the net metering subsidies and the renewable energy credits; and whether you are appropriating public and private resources that simply do not belong to you; or whether you are sacrificing them -- all for the benefit of altruistic operators like New Generation Wind, LLC, the shell corporation that wants to cash in on this opportunity in Bourne, or individual towns like Falmouth and Brewster.

Wind Energy Critics Wear Tin Foil Hats and Spend Too Much Time on the Internet

This may be the most galling, and the most perverse, argument that is routinely marshalled by wind energy proponents, including CVEC spokesman, Ms. Argo, to muddy the water and discredit the critics.   It is a tried and true routine that springs straight from the "talking points" section of the American Wind Energy Association website where their favorite theme is to contrast "Fact vs. Fiction."

Once they've properly framed the debate, they proceed through their "science based facts" -- all of which are pure fiction and then dismiss all of the factual arguments of their critics as "fiction" --  the desperate ravings of NIMBY's, naive global warming denialists and outright nincompoops who have too much time on their hands and get carried away surfing the internet.   And you know that they're right.   After all, who can you trust for an impartial opinion if you can't trust a lobbyist?

It would be laughable if it weren't so painfully effective -- at least until people learn the facts.

It is in this proud tradition that Ms Argo concludes her recent Op Ed piece, denigrating the handful of "angry and tearful" citizens who "bombarded" the Assembly of Delegates with their "horror stories and misinformation."

According to Ms. Argo:

"Fear and politics seem to have co-opted the careful and responsible review that should attend wind energy proposals. Instead of rationale, local review representatives witness a citizenry that is terrified by misinformation. It is reminiscent of the outcry against Guglielmo Marconi 's work on radio waves, or the outcry against cars due to their frightening effect on horses. It's reminiscent of the old fears of microwaves and high tension wires. Even elevators terrified the public when first introduced....

"Politicians, hopeful of reelection, can not be expected to stand tall in the face of the kind of hysteria we're seeing demonstrated at Cape Cod hearings on wind projects. An over-riding agency is needed, whether it is the Cape Cod Commission, using, as yet, undeveloped Technical Standards, or, it is the proposed State Wind Energy Siting Board. The process needs rescuing. Our local representatives are under too much pressure and are not equipped to sort the hysteria from the facts."

Here is a link to the entire Op Ed:  Response to the Assembly of Delegates

In other words, the Assembly of Delegates -- spineless nincompoops all -- were simply fooled into rejecting the Cape Cod Commission's proposed Minimum Performance Standards (which essentially eliminated all meaningful standards and promised "to fill in the blanks later") by an 84% majority last November, by an hysterical, vocal minority.

Citizens who express concern about the consequences of industrial wind energy on Cape Cod today are no more deserving of respect and consideration than the uninformed and superstitious citizens of earlier generations who feared Marconi's wireless radio, cars, microwaves, high tension wires and even elevators.

Just where does Ms. Argo think that we found all of the scientists, electrical engineers, medical doctors, acoustic noise experts, authors and reporters from mainstream publications such as Audiology Today, Acoustic Ecology, the National Park Service Park Science Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, the NY Times, the journal of the American Bar Association, major universities and professional associations, expert testimony, state and national health boards, et al -- at a U.F.O. Convention in New Mexico?

Can Ms. Argo really hope to brazen it out in this fashion, when her only rebuttal to all of this "hysteria" -- to all of the independent, impartial, fully documented information provided by well-meaning citizens to their local decision makers in good faith -- is a handful of dog-eared, and fully discredited "white papers" commissioned by AWEA, the wind industry lobby, and a handful of others, like the Department of Energy, with an agenda to promote?

Apparently so.

Out with Local Autonomy and Home Rule / In with the State Citing Council!

Ms. Argo insists that, "It's time for the old guard to join the new century!"

But Ms. Argo also concludes that the situation is essentially hopeless because "local representatives" are incapable of exercising their own judgment or faithfully representing the best interests of their citizens in the face of such "hysteria."

Apparently, you can't fool all of the people all of the time; but according to Ms. Argo, you can fool the Assembly of Delegates 84% of the time (or is that 84% of the Delegates some of the time?).

It's time, says Ms. Argo, to establish "an over-riding agency" -- like "the proposed State Wind Energy Citing Board" envisioned in the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act last year -- so that the external, "over-riding agency" will be free to embrace Ms. Argo's point of view and to "over-ride" all local concerns from the hysterical "old guard" that still places a high value on the preservation of existing, and legitimate, rights and values on Cape Cod.

Does that sound familiar?  Well, it should.

Ms. Argo is proposing the same program that CVEC espouses in its vow to pursue special legislation to neuter the Old Kings Highway Historic District Commission.   Why can't those folks in the old guard, on the OKH Historic District Commission, see the wisdom of "joining the new century"?

Do you think someone should tell Ms. Argo that they entire Cape Cod delegation to the State House is opposed to the WESRA legislation because they fear just such a loss of local autonomy and control over their own fate?

Isn't this what the dictators always say?  That democracy is just so....unwieldy that it's impossible to get anything done?  Better to place total control in the hands of a small group of people who agree with Ms. Argo's "facts" -- and act decisively, no matter what the community says that they want, no?

That is the solution that Ms. Argo proposes.   She wants to place herself -- or some like-minded individual -- in the position of making the sole determination of which facts are "fiction" and which conveniently enabling fictions should be embraced as "fact."  And why wouldn't she?  This is exactly the same approach that she has pursued in Brewster; in Harwich; in Bourne; and in front of the Cape Cod Commission for a very long time now.

Where Do We Go From Here

We are hopeful that CVEC, with the encouragement from the Public Records Division, will soon provide the public with the information that we have requested.

We have made our concerns known to the Brewster Planning Board and it is our hope that the Planning Board will appreciate the seriousness of these questions -- and will have better luck at obtaining answers to all of them from CVEC, its proposed partner.

Although it is sometimes difficult for us to avoid allowing a very frustrated tone to color our correspondence, we have tried our level best to respect the intelligence, the good judgment and the civic commitment of the members of the Brewster Planning Board and other Town Boards and Committees -- all of whose members are striving to act responsibly and to pursue the course of action that they deem to be in the best interests of Brewster and Cape Cod.

Save Our Seashore is just one organization among many groups and individuals who have studied this issue of industrial wind energy long and hard.  I am willing to compare our collective depth of knowledge -- and the integrity of our information -- against that of anyone.  All of that knowledge was acquired the hard way, with endless hours of effort by dedicated individuals who, like you, have dedicated themselves to trying to do the right thing on behalf of Brewster and Cape Cod.

We don't mean to make our criticisms personal, but it is impossible to rebut false claims without stating who said them, in what context, and why their arguments are hollow or destructive to the debate, to individual citizens, to Brewster and to the larger community.

We don't begrudge anyone their good intentions and, in fact, I'm sure that we share the same goals.  Everyone in our organization, without exception, is an ardent environmentalist and every single one of us has enjoyed a longstanding love affair with Cape Cod.

But sometimes good people operating from the best of intentions can pursue a course of action that has unforeseen, distinctly harmful, and long lasting consequences.  We are attempting to show you that, in our view, the proposal to erect two 400 foot wind turbines in Brewster carries many hidden costs and, worse, will impose unjust burdens, unwarranted risks and undue hardship on significant number of people.

In our view, no matter how promising this project may have seemed to you initially, we believe that you must conclude that it would be irresponsible of the Planning Board to approve it.

Thank you for considering our point of view.  Please know that we are at your disposal if should care to challenge us, or seek further information, on any point.

Sincerely,

Eric Bibler
President

Cc: CVEC
Cc: Cape Cod Commission
Cc: Assembly of Delegates
Cc: Barnstable County Commissioners

8Oct/100

Many Countries Protest The False Hope of Wind Energy!

Posted by venturen

If you read the NY Times article For Those Near, the Miserable Hum of Clean Energy which makes it seem that only a few people are affected by wind turbine noise and it is fine to ignore them, because the  unaffected out number them...checkout out the number of countries all over Europe who are having massive protests against this wholesale
HARM being wrought by wind turbines. You name a country with wind turbines, you will see protests. It is now obvious the massive squandering of money for a very part-time solution is very irresponsible and very real harm is being perpetrated to the natural world by Wind Turbines!

Take a look at

European Platform
Against Windfarms

The problem is the powerful wind lobby is making billions of dollars/euros to enact this part time solution. While we the defenders who are trying to protect neighbors, our tax dollars, our electric bills, our woods, our seashore, our peace and quiet, our homes and our parks are not to be enriched at the expense of taxpayers and utility ratepayers! Get informed and defend our world from the false hope of wind energy!

2Mar/100

Wood fueled biomass energy worse for carbon dioxide emissions than fossil fuels

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

I have included the following press release to show that the State of Massachusetts is putting in place other harmful directives with regards to energy policy. The state funded Massachusetts Technology Collaborative is the "brains" behind placing a wind turbines in a NATIONAL PARK and cutting down STATE FORESTS to burn, while giving towns and companies money to wreak this destructions. We are strong believers in the environment and are confounded to understand MA's Renewable Energy Policy of siting Wind Turbines in pristine protected forest and clearing  state forest for BIOMASS. We need to speak up and tell our governments to FIRST DO NO HARM when it comes to protecting the environment.  GET INFORMED! These things are really happening. State and National lands are being destroyed while your tax and utility money are going to greedy people who are feeding on your good intentions!

Wood fueled biomass energy worse for carbon dioxide emissions than fossil fuels  

Massachusetts Forest Watch released a report today (www.maforests.org/MFWCarb.pdf) stating that contrary to the belief that wood fueled biomass burning would help lower carbon dioxide emissions, it would instead dramatically increase them.

According to the group, wood fueled biomass burning is typically touted as a carbon neutral fuel by biomass proponents, but the key assumption about carbon neutrality is unsubstantiated and impossible when using existing forests as fuel.

In the report, wood fueled biomass power plants are shown to be worse than all fossil fuel power plants, including coal, for carbon dioxide emissions per unit of energy produced.  Calculations provided show wood fueled biomass power plants emit about 50% more CO2 per MWh than existing coal plants, 150% more than existing natural gas plants and 330% more than new power plants.

Forest Watch spokesperson Chris Matera said, “It really is crazy.  Hundreds of millions of dollars in public so-called “green” energy subsidies are being wasted on dirty wood biomass burning of forests instead of going to genuinely clean energy sources such as solar, geothermal, appropriate wind and hydro and importantly conservation and efficiency.  At a time when budgets are being slashed, we are throwing away scarce taxpayer money on a caveman technology that will worsen our problems, not help solve them.”

Last Wednesday, a hearing was held in Boston by the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy on House Bill 4458 that would create into law the citizen’s referendum that recently collected over 78,000 certified signatures, which is enough to put the measure on the ballot in November.  The ballot measure would put a limit on carbon dioxide emissions in order for renewable energy sources to be eligible to receive taxpayer subsidies and other benefits and would effectively ban taxpayer subsidies from being directed toward wood fueled biomass plants since their carbon dioxide emissions are so high.

"We find that people are willing to support truly clean energy but do not want to pay extra on their electricity bills and tax bills to build these dirty biomass incinerators," said Jana Chicoine of the Concerned Citizens of Russell, "Everyone knows that the proposed biomass incinerators would add to air pollution and make carbon emissions worse, yet the Patrick administration is still forcing us to pay for it.  It's a tragic situation, but we have a chance to fix it in the legislature over the next couple of weeks."

Meg Sheehan, chair of the Stop Spewing Carbon ballot question committee commenting about the hearing added, “last week the Massachusetts legislature received un-rebutted testimony from medical professionals that particulate emissions from wood burning biomass plants increase human mortality.  A broad coalition of medical and citizen groups are urging our elected officials to support House Bill 4458 to address this public health threat.  Action is needed now," she added.

4Jan/100

Stop Wind Energy Siting Reform Act

Posted by SaveOurSeaShore

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Help protect our local economy and environment!

The Massachusetts legislature could vote tomorrow on the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act, which will allow the state to override local zoning decisions about the permitting of industrial wind facilities, replace environmental laws with “standards” that can be applied or waived by the state, and eliminate traditional rights of participation and appeal.

Here’s what you can do to help:

  1. Click here to learn more about the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act
  2. Click here to contact your elected Representatives.
  3. Click here to contact Governor Deval Patrick.
  4. Sign the petition NOW.
  5. Ask your friends to do the same.
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