March 5, 2013
Letters, Vermont

Irrational reaction

February 13, 2013 | Rutland Herald via Grandpa's Knob Wind Project

“Houston, we have a problem.” The Apollo astronauts and NASA engineers saved the day because they maintained cool heads when they were very scared because they had a terrible problem. They knew they had to keep cool heads because actions taken in fear sometimes are irrational reactions.

I was able to attend Mr. McKibben’s recent presentation at the Rutland library, which was reported in the Feb. 8 Rutland Herald. Mr. McKibben has recognized we have a scary problem. He is rightfully scared about the effects of global climate change, but some of his promoted actions are irrational.

Ms. Beard writes in the Rutland Herald, “I think that, with care, consideration, solid science and engineering, it is possible to find acceptable solutions to these vital problems in our rapidly changing world.” There is much in that statement. Irrational reactions do not constitute care, consideration, solid science and engineering. We have all learned much about how very expensive industrial wind is while accomplishing very little in reducing carbon dioxide and causing significant harmful environmental and human health side-effects.

Through irrational reaction, Mr. McKibben says that every turn of a wind turbine blade is productive. He is wrong. Solid science and engineering would tell him that.

In the Rutland Herald article Mr. McKibben is quoted as saying, “I look forward to the day when I look at windmills spinning above me because it will show that we accept our responsibility.” Mr. McKibbin’s totems towers will be a symbol of our folly not of our responsibility.

Insulation is vastly more cost-effective at lowering carbon dioxide emissions than industrial wind and has no human health or environmental side-effects. If Mr. McKibben (and Sen. Sanders) need some type of symbol, then let’s put a 3-foot-by-5-foot plaque facing the street on every home that gets an insulation upgrade as part of the thermal efficiency program being discussed in the Vermont Legislature. Eighty thousand plaques all over Vermont. Now that would be a symbol to our wisdom and to our taking responsibility.

The human health and environmental effects along with the irrationality of industrial wind for electricity production are clear. We need to design a better strategy. I believe industrial wind is an irrational response to a scary problem. It is a terrible solution to a terrible problem.


URL to article: