Jeff Ward’s article about HB1597 regarding location of wind turbines was interesting. Good points made. I do question a few points though. He says that Randolph County’s 100 wind turbines provide energy for 60,000 homes. I have a feeling that is only under perfect, peak conditions, which never happens 100-percent of the time. I have seen data showing wind farms only produce at about 25-percent capacity. Perhaps that is still not bad, but it does provide a different, more realistic figure.
Energy portfolios are artificial deadlines and create unintended consequences when people and companies are forced to conform or suffer penalties. They take away from other possible solutions that can’t be pursued because of resources going to the “energy portfolio.”
Mostly I agree that power should stay local, but don’t we all agree that state regulation of health and safety standards is good and necessary? Industrial wind farms fall into the same category because they do have health and safety repercussions that will affect more people as the wind farms expand.
Considering that every wind farm encompasses about 20,000 acres, protecting the people and animals within that area is no small feat, and should not be shrugged off with a “it doesn’t affect anyone” mentality. If projected windfalls do materialize, are they worth compromising the health, safety, and property values of a community?
Please don’t compare a drive-by observance of a wind farm as the same as having to live near one 24/7. How can anyone defend that momentary observance as a “scientific” truth?
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