Maybe some facts would help answer Ms. Starr’s recent questions about ridgeline wind.
Will they harm wildlife? The experts say, “Yes.” Especially vulnerable are birds (particularly eagles and hawks) and bats. Vermont just listed two bat species as “endangered.”
Will they harm water quality? The experts say, “Yes.” These intact mountains are big filters providing our communities below with clean, clear water. Putting 450-foot turbines on ridgelines requires building roads. This screws up the filtration pattern. Look out below! Here comes some muddy water for your well.
Will the noise drive some people crazy? Increasing medical evidence says, “Maybe, due to sleep deprivation.” In the case of the Lowell wind proposal, would you – as an abutting landowner – like to be told you can’t sleep with your windows open? “Get a fan, preferably one with a pedal. Save electricity.”
Will ridgeline turbines decrease area property values? Studies from the Midwest say, “Yes.” Do some people find them interesting? Sure. And some people would find ridgeline Ferris wheels interesting. Some people find trainwrecks interesting. Pick up a copy of “Grand Theft Auto.” That’s “interesting” for some people.
Will wind turbines bring tourists who shower us with money? Who knows? Will other tourists turn around and go back to Massachusetts without buying so much as a slice of local cheese? Who knows?
So, why do we have a billboard law? Some people like billboards don’t they? Why do we have a bottle law? Some people pick them up for pocket change, don’t they? Why is Act 250, (as bothersome as some people find it) often given credit for helping stabilize Vermont’s economy during difficult times?
The basic point is that few would argue that they find living in Vermont to be a good thing because its landscape is fundamentally unaltered and beautiful. And that clean, cold water just keeps on flowing off the mountains – free – without turbines. Anyone want to argue with that?
Steve E. Wright