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On wind energy, be careful what you wish for

Mayor Tom Barrett welcomes wind energy “with open arms.” State law now permits wind turbines 1,250 feet from your home and 500 feet from your property.

In Fond du Lac County and Brown County, people living near turbines report health problems. Ann and Jason Wirtz restored their Victorian farmhouse. With the startup of wind turbines, their 10 alpacas spontaneously aborted their young. Their daughter developed intestinal lesions, had interrupted sleep and stress, and felt the low frequency noise on their farm. They walked away to restore their family’s health, and a New York bank bought their $300,000 farm for $107,000.

We invite Barrett to tour Brown County’s Shirley Wind turbine project. It has had three owners; $13 million in taxpayer subsidies went to the developer producing one permanent job. Eight families report sleep deprivation, hypertension, earaches, dizziness, and nausea. Three affected families have walked away from their homes. Go to the website of the Brown County Citizens for Responsible Wind Energy for their stories. Roger Ebert commented that wind turbines “are yet another device by which energy corporations and Wall Street … are picking the pockets of those who can least afford it.”

Barrett is eager to restart wind projects. Would an offshore wind project be welcomed by Barrett for the city of Milwaukee? The technology exists. He could pave the way for this project to happen – soon. Be careful for what you wish.

Sandra Johnson