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Massachusetts finds turbines too costly to remove

Last week, two towns in Massachusetts have responded to complaints and curtailed operations of wind turbines.

Falmouth local government had voted unanimously to remove the town’s two turbines, but the $14 million price tag is too costly. The turbines went on line in 2010, and in May 2012 the town began turning them off 12 hours a day due to complaints of noise and physical and mental health problems that began with the turbines’ operation.

Energy-conscious residents who whole-heartedly supported wind energy became vehemently opposed when faced with the reality of headaches, sleeplessness, anxiety and vertigo related to noise, infrasound, vibrations and shadow flicker from industrial turbines sited too close to residences. Wednesday a Fairhaven, Mass., selectman called for turning off the town’s turbines at night to spare 57 families from ill effects.

All over the country and the world, people have learned the hard way that industrial wind installations must not be installed within a mile of homes. We cannot afford to learn the hard way! Every day more is known about the best siting of turbines to preserve quality of life for people. Restrictions and greater setbacks are being implemented everywhere.

Our federal government is burdening taxpayers with staggering debt while doling out billions to wind companies that are rushing to take advantage while the money is available. Let’s slow down the gravy train prompted by federal subsidies and do what is right. The financial gain of a few land owners must not be more important than citizens’ ability to inhabit and enjoy their very homes.

Anyone who reads the Tribune cannot help but be aware of the recent battle waged by Tipton County residents to halt the proliferation of wind farms. Their county commissioners have listened to residents’ concerns and responded with a moratorium on new wind energy projects while they review their zoning ordinance.

The Howard County commissioners meet at 8:30 a.m. Monday in the County Administration Center, 220 N. Main St., third floor, Room 338. Attend and let them know there is opposition to wind farms in Howard County.

Susie Cox