I spent some time at the wind farm south of Highmore recently. The sky was blue, it was 65 degrees, hardly a cloud in the sky, and the breeze was light.
Since it was about one year ago that I lost one of my best friends in a plane, along with three other guys I knew, that crashed into a wind turbine at that very site, I decided to pull over alongside the road and take a moment to count my blessings and remember my friend Brent.
I rolled down my windows, shut the pickup off and leaned back in my seat. But instead of hearing peace and quiet, which I had expected, I heard wind turbines.
Two turbines had what looked like a manhole cover in the center that were unlatched, and every time the turbine made a revolution, the door would slam shut with a bang. And then there was the buzzing coming from the gear boxes and the swooshing sound coming from the blades. As I tried to reflect on the accident, I soon had little choice but to roll up my windows because there was no sense of peace. As I headed home, I couldn’t help but ask myself who would want these noisy eyesores near their home?
I feel bad for the people who are selling their air rights that actually live where they intend on putting up the turbines. They have put a price tag on their quality of life. They have also put a price tag on their neighbor’s quality of life. I also have no respect for the people who want turbines in everyone else’s back yard except their own. And for those investors whose whole motivation is a return on investment, I’d like to know how much of a return on their money is worth ruining the quality of life of someone?
Life is fragile and short. A lot of things that matter most, matter when they are gone. I’d give it all up to have my friend back. But money can’t do that. Money can’t do a lot of things.
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