RUSSELLS POINT – A large crowd of concerned residents gathered Saturday at the Indian Lake Community Church hall in Russells Point to attend a meeting outlining the negative impact of wind turbines set to be installed in the area as part of the Scioto Ridge Wind Project.
“There are turbines that would be put a quarter-mile from Indian Lake,” organizer Don Eggenschwiller said. “These will be visible from every part of Indian Lake.”
Eggenschwiller and other concerned residents maintain that these 176 turbines now being considered for construction in Hardin and Logan Counties will deface the natural beauty of the landscape, including Indian Lake State Park.
“This is the state’s crown jewel for inland water,” Eggenschwiller said. “We can’t believe that the governor won’t step up and help us stop this and that they are just willing to let this go forward.”
That will greatly reduce property values, according to new resident Kelley Campbell.
“Our neighborhood is a brand new, exclusive development with 52 homes,” she said. “We have our own boat ramp, our own beaches, a pool and clubhouse. We just got started. There are only three of us that live there. We’re in full economic recovery, still building models, trying to ramp it up. We’re going to be looking straight at these turbines. My problem is that this is not what any of us moved there to look at or listen to on our decks when we go out.”
Campbell and her husband invested their entire life savings into their new house, and these turbines threaten to ruin that investment.
“If you know anything about living near the water, the costs to move there is an extra $100,000,” she said. “The lot alone costs $185,000. So I’m scared to death. We’ve put everything we’ve worked for since we were 25 years old into this house. Now there will be eight 500-foot turbines out there.”
Campbell is also concerned about the risks to the health of those who live near turbines.
“The heath facts are notable, but they are still being debated,” she said. “You’ll have 30 minutes of flicker with the sun coming through those. You have sleep disturbances. The World Health Organization has come out saying that these have caused sleep deprivation all across Europe. So there are health hazards, but everyone is minimizing those. Everyone seems to dismiss that, and that makes me angry.”
Those against wind power argue that the turbines are inefficient, actually drawing more power from existing grids than they add.
“These things eat electricity when they’re sitting still,” Eggenschwiller said. “They have air conditioners, heaters and hydrolic motors.”
“It’s not cleaner,” Campbell said. “It’s not greener. It’s not efficient. The turbines have to be backed up constantly by regular power grids. So they’re sucking more than they’re providing.”
The worst thing about the situation, according to Eggenschwiller, is that the government keeps blindly subsidizing these turbines with taxpayer money.
“These guys build these turbines because the government throws money at them,” he said. “The Scioto Ridge Wind Farm is ultimately owned by Terra Firma Capital Partners, a venture capital group out of London. So when the profits, if any, come out, they are going out of the country. All of the tax subsidies coming out of our pocket are going out of the country.”
“They’re taking my tax money to put them in and then they’re going to kill me again by killing my property value,” Campbell said. “It’s a double whammy.”
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