Does this describe your county?
Your commissioners have an unshakeable resolve to promote anything “wind.” They sit expressionless, stoically “listening” while citizens share “concerns.”
But wait. Your commissioners must be acting in support of someone, right? You know … the ones who love wind energy, the ones who do want “wind.” But where are they? They are invisible. They do not bother to come to the meetings. They don’t need to come.
Zero bother to attend (maybe half-dozen if they can be bothered) who support wind. Yet, these invisible wind supporters are mighty influential. They already know that the decision-makers have “their backs.”
Why? Because the wind company in your area has already been in your community for a couple of years. They have become well acquainted with your county officials, your economic development commission, your chamber of commerce, community foundation, the movers and shakers, “stakeholders,” business leaders. They’ve held meet-and-greet opportunities for the landowners, introduced themselves to your schools, maybe even asked your schools to hold an essay contest on the benefits of wind energy.
You may be one of those who just found out about wind energy. You wanted to wait, see what the hubbub was about. When you realized that maybe you should attend a county meeting, ask a question, talk to others, a few more months have gone by. That’s what “wind” counts on.
By the time the people discover just how far along this project is, the wheel is in motion. Spinning fast. “Wind” counts on that. Counts on the fact that it will take the people time to “get it,” time to educate themselves, time to figure out the county meeting process, time to organize, when they can speak, when they cannot speak, who they should contact, what they should do to stop the wheel. They count on it.
You may be unable to find your local leaders or any official wind payroll, but they do a bang-up job of pleasing the minority of lease signers and any wind company who walks across the county line. Wind reps prepare them for the likes of people like you. It is common for concerned citizens to get their pants in a bunch. No worries. They know how to deal with that, too. Just ignore it. Common people are vocal, but powerless. All “wind” needs are three commissioners, and they’ve got this.
Sadly, it is the same story, different cast everywhere wind blows. Discord, division and distrust follow wind wherever it goes, until the residents get so discouraged, disheartened and destroyed that they finally give up.
Well, don’t give up. This is important. Wind companies are destroying the beauty of America and the heart of the people for greed, for money. And you can do something. You can show up, post a sign, make a call, write a letter, run for office, vote, contact legislators, keep talking, keep sharing, seek legal advice, gather funds, learn your county government, and most importantly, don’t be afraid to encourage your landowners, and your officials, to stand up against “Big Wind.”
Susie Painter Eichhorn
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