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Daughter defends father’s windmill stance

This letter is in response to Ms. O’Neil’s Feb. 3 missive about the lawsuit by my father challenging the permitting process for the construction of a wind turbine on state-owned, open-space land. Her letter, which is full of hyperbole, poetic license, and deification of the turbine as “majestic” and holding “profound beauty” which produces a “tear to my eye,” distorts, obfuscates, and misses the point. The paper even highlighted the article by its prominence, singling it out of all the other letters to the editor for prominence.

Never has my father even implied in his complaint that the inspiring accomplishments of humans and efforts to save the environment should be denigrated or dismissed for backward and regressive thinking, such as “mountaintop removal, hydraulic fracking and oil refiners.” The debate and case is not about whether we as a country explore clean energy sources, but rather about how and where these clean sources of energy are employed.

We are supposedly a land of law with the right to due process guaranteed both in the U.S. and Delaware’s constitutions. That is the essence of my father’s lawsuit: His right to be heard during the permitting process was violated, and laws were disregarded to allow the university to build the turbine as quickly as possible. Following the law would have delayed the project, and the university would not have qualified for a huge federal grant.

His lawsuit is attempting to hold the state agency, city and university accountable for their alleged infractions. I am not certain if Ms. O’Neil purposefully omitted the facts of the lawsuit by reducing it to a concern for property value and a “personal vendetta,” or if she is just ignorant of the contents of the complaint which focuses on backroom dealing among university, state and city officials, and lack of concern for the property rights of people with
homes close to the turbine.

Lastly, I personally attest the sound emitted from the turbine is, in fact, more like a jet engine and not “a healthy sea breeze.” I have never been awakened and unable to fall back asleep with a sea breeze, which is exactly what happened during my recent visit to Lewes.

Dr. Lydia Lechliter
Pittsburgh, Pa. and Lewes