How many Seneca County landowners have done their homework before pushy wind farm sales people knocked on their doors and enticed them with promises of thousands of dollars? How many potential host landowners considered these issues?
1. The number of birds – including eagles – and bats that have been killed annually by the turbines and the effect that has on the ecosystem.
2. The “strobe effect” produced as sunlight passes through the turning rotors.
3. Health problems caused by low frequency noise exposure (headaches, migraines) and sleep deprivation suffered by people who live near wind farms.
4. Loss of property values and a resulting tax base decrease, offsetting any gains that may be realized by the host areas.
5. If the wind farms are so beneficial, why are landowners forced to sign “gag orders” (with additional annual payment) as part of their lease agreements, preventing them from complaining about issues connected with the turbines and/or joining in on suits against the wind developers?
6. Other ancillary farm effects (wrecked tiles caused by heavy construction equipment and/or placement of connection lines, changes in field drainage patterns, loss of additional land to accommodate access roads and/or substations, adverse effects on farm animals).
7. Loss of hunting resources.
8. Damages from wind turbines that leak oil or throw ice hundreds of feet at high velocity.
9. Some landowners have had liens put on their property due to disputes that wind farm developers have had with contractors over unpaid bills. Legal filings have been against the landowner – not the developer and the landowner is unable to sell his or her property until the liens have been satisfied.
10. The importance of setbacks from property lines rather than from residences only. Neighbors of landowners with leases may also be prohibited from building on their own land and they are receiving no compensation for the loss of this right. (There is an outstanding graphic that explains this concern. Google “Wind Turbine Setback Graphic” and look at “Better Plan: The Trouble with Industrial Wind Farms in Wisconsin.”)
11. Some estimates for decommissioning of property when the wind turbine is no longer viable have been close to a quarter of a million dollars per turbine. Have provisions been made for that decommissioning (monetary and assignment of responsibility)?
Still need things to think about? Here is an easy read that is a good counter for wind propaganda: “Tiny the Turbine” by Lyndsey Ward (www.cartoonsbyjosh.co.uk/tiny-the-turbine). It also would be worth your while to take the time to watch a YouTube video: (“A wind enthusiast and a wind lease holder both learn a hard lesson”) where two Michigan residents explain the regrets they are experiencing as a result of wind farms coming into their community.
Show concern for all parties – your neighbors and future generations – who are affected by these wind farms. Don’t let $$$$$ cloud your vision!