The prospect of hundreds of industrial wind towers standing 50 stories high looms in the future of Union, Lincoln and now Minnehaha counties. I am not against renewable energy, but I am against political compromise that places citizen’s health and safety at risk.
Siting of industrial wind turbines deserves careful attention to limiting noise exposure levels to community and rural residents through specified restrictions on both distance and noise levels. The right of the public to enjoy health and well-being should ride far above the economic and political interests of the wind industry and governmental bodies. Industrial-scale wind turbines should be sited only at distances from residents that are sufficient to minimize sleep disturbance and that do not put them at risk for a variety of other serious health problems or safety impacts. Globally, these distances are routinely being extended to almost one mile and more.
Around the world, opposition to wind energy is growing. Government officials have failed to give adequate weight to health issues, ignoring volumes of scientific evidence. I know of no other industry that is allowed to come into a community and not have to prove their safety to the public, but demand that the public prove that they are unsafe.
I find it incredible that the wind industry is allowed to indemnify itself from responsibility for all ills that the towers produce by simply denying that those ills exist. It is unacceptable that our elected officials, at all levels, are leaving our affected citizens to try and navigate through a legal system with high monetary costs just to live a normal life in the midst of these towers of oppressive dimension.
It is time to stop this awful practice and time to demand that our local county government provide ordinances that will uphold their oath of office “to protect the health, safety and economic welfare of its citizens.”
Email or call your county commissioners today and attend the Planning and Zoning Public Hearing on Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. Lincoln County Courthouse.
Cindy Thomas, Rural Lincoln County