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County Board asked to remember safety

An open letter to the Calumet County Board.

Dodge County is the site of the largest industrial wind energy system in Wisconsin. Four hundred foot tall wind towers dominate the landscape, dwarfing all other structures in the once pastoral, rolling farmland. Farmland has been torn up by construction/access roads and criss-crossed with underground electrical network connecting the towers. Roads are rough and broken from heavy equipment constructing the gigantic towers. Viewscapes from rural homes are obscured by churning wind towers. Dodge County, under pressure and threats of legal action from the developer of the Forward Wind Project, and lured by money, approved a weak ordinance based on the state wind energy model ordinance.

We have learned that low-frequency noise produced by wind turbines, and flicker from turbine blades, can cause serious health effects for some people. A Wisconsin family won a lawsuit against the wind energy company for health effects caused by turbines too near their residence. Wisconsin’s model wind energy ordinance written by wind energy lobbyists has no scientific or legal basis.

I urge the Calumet County Board to enact a wind energy ordinance that will truly protect the health, safety and property value of county residents. Follow the leadership of the Town of Union (Rock County) whose Wind Turbine Study Committee recommended that wind towers not be sited closer than ½ mile to any residence. The committee’s 318 page report summarizing their research, is based on review of thousands of pages of peer-reviewed scientific articles. They learned that the World Health Organization recommends that wind turbines should not be sited closer that 1.5 miles from residences.

Wind energy, at most, will play only a very small role in our future energy needs. Do not compromise the health and safety of project area residents. Wind energy siting ordinances must be based on science, not on the wind energy industry sales pitch and bribery. Energy conservation is the answer, not industrial wind towers.

Sincerely,

James Congdon

N7991 Schwarze Road

Horicon, WI 53032

Tri-County News

14 February 2008