Members of a group opposed to the development of further wind turbines in the Ballylongford area say company Microsoft did not consider what the group believes will be the ‘adverse impact’ of the turbines it has agreed to purchase power from on people living within 500m of the giant structures.
No More Wind Turbines at Ballylongford (NMWT@Ballylongford) was responding to the news that Microsoft has entered into an agreement with General Electric to purchase the entire output of the turbines that it is presently erecting in the Tullahinell area outside the village over the first 15 years of their transmission.
Essentially, Microsoft is agreeing to purchase the equivalent output from the grid for what it says are its requirements to power ‘cloud’ service unit – data bases providing the space for internet users to upload files. They require massive power simply in order to cool the computer servers.
“While the decision of Microsoft may appear to be ‘good news’, they obviously did not consider the severe adverse impact on the quality of the lives of the people who have to live with wind turbines 500m from their properties,” Chairperson of the NMWT group Tony Dowd said.
“NMWT@Ballylongford, like many other community groups in North Kerry, are objecting to the proliferation of wind turbines in our area to safeguard the health and welfare of current and future residents. In an already depopulated area, the presence of wind turbines discourages many people from living here – already, Ballylongford NS had no new pupils for this school year.
“Microsoft have announced a 15 year agreement. The wind turbines at Tullahinnell have a 20 year operating period. What will happen for the 5 years after Micrsoft walks away? Who will pay for the turbines to be dismantled or will they simply be left to rust away? How long will local residents continue to pay for short sighted decisions?”