Residents of Urirama and Alto Vista, united in organization Affected Residents Aruba (ARU) left Aruba Parliament during the wind turbine debate on Thursday January 31st 2013. “We are disappointed at the way the government has been treating our concerns.” a representative of ARU says. “The debate was dominated by political issues, in which filed and known facts, numbers and studies where abused to prove themselves right and political campaigning.”
In a sound democratic process the responsibility of a government is to prove “national interest” and the caution in taking care of the concerns and potential risks to affected citizens is the burden of government. In this case, it seems that the burden of proof is being placed on the citizens, while the government makes all kinds of claims that are not being substantiated by clear and transparent evidence, while there is no recourse for citizens if their claims prove to be untrue.
ARU has always been open about the intentions, wishes and plans to stop the construction of industrial wind turbines at Urirama. ARU started out with diplomacy to voice their concerns about the potential health risks. ARU collected donations to hire international experts on health and acoustics to make presentations for government, interest groups and the general public.
Over 5000 signatures were collected for a petition against the permit to be issued for construction of the wind park. To this day government hasn’t reacted to this petition; the official response time has been passed for months. During that time construction work continued and test drilling has been conducted in the landscape of Urirama zoned as ‘Nature’.
ARU has come to the realization during the debates of 31st of January and 1st February that questions and worries of the residents are being ignored and there is no ‘Transparency of good governance” to be found in Aruba. Involved companies, government offices and the government act as if the construction of wind turbine park Urirama at Alto Vista is a ‘done deal’.
ARU sees no other possibility than to start a court case to protect residents’ health and environment and demand the construction needs to be halted as long as the right procedures and permits have been followed and issued. The case has been filed on January the 1st at 15.15 pm in Aruba.
Affected Residents Urirama also urges residents of Noord, and Aruba, to never accept unsubstantiated information blindly. As one of the victims of wind turbines has put it during their presentation on Aruba: “Our biggest fault was we believed in what the project manager and our public representatives told us, without conducting our own research first and demanding irrefutable proof of the information they gave us.”
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