Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

June 25, 2013

June 25, 2013: Letters to the editor


Kokomo Tribune

---- — Study the turbines already installed

An important early lesson you should learn is divide by 10 anything heard from a salesman, whose one purpose is to sell you something. But if you fail to investigate the drawbacks, you will make some awful decisions.

Yet for some reason, our county commissioners consider the company salesmen for industrial wind turbines (IWTs) more credible than people now living among them who simply report their experiences.

Evidence is readily available about the problems caused by IWTs. Just one example in a peer-reviewed publication, Canadian Family Physician, from May 2013: “A 2006 National Academy of Medicine working group report notes that noise is the most frequent complaint. The noise is described as piercing, preoccupying, and continually surprising, as it is irregular in intensity. The noise includes grating and incongruous sounds that distract the attention or disturb rest. The spontaneous recurrence of these noises disturbs the sleep, suddenly awakening the subject when the wind rises and preventing the subject from going back to sleep.”

Beyond the health issues, there is good evidence real estate values for those living near IWTs will drop, a further kick in the rear. We residents of eastern Howard County were told during the June 17 meeting of our county commissioners that our inconvenience is necessary for the greater benefit of the county. A few farmers will get something like $12,000 a year for each turbine they allow in their fields, and we could each lose more than that in the value of our homes. Does this make us “collateral damage?”

Ask yourself, is “wind power,” which depends on large government subsidies, a thriving business? In fact, the cost per kilowatt-hour of generating electricity by conventional methods is about 4 cents, whereas the subsidies alone for wind power are 5.6 cents. With this country trillions of dollars in debt, it is for certain these subsidies must end. When this happens, who will be left holding the bag?

The excuse for locating the IWTs here is that our area needs economic development. Creating six to eight jobs is hardly significant. In fact, we are sitting on some of the most productive agricultural land in the world, and we already know what industry makes the best use of this resource. It’s called farming, and we are quite happy with it.

Those of us living in eastern Howard County have been suggesting for some time that, since this wind project was passed by the commissioners with virtually no public input, a moratorium on their coming here is needed to allow a more complete look at the impact of the turbines already installed. Please inform yourself by looking at our website, easternhowardwind.com, which has been set up by Howard County Concerned Citizens, and plan to join us at the next commissioners’ meeting July 1.

Tom Cornell

Greentown

Leaseholders forget high-risk neighbors

Proponents of wind issues can debunk Google until they are blue in the face, but what about juwi’s experts who testified at the eight-hour BZA hearing?

One expert said, “the low frequency infrasound these turbines create does not harm human tissue.” I am a human, and everyone whom I know is as well. So why didn’t the big legal team just say humans, instead of human tissue? That would have been a lie, so they said, “human tissue.” Thank goodness ... at least my parents’ skin isn’t at risk from wind turbines.

An expert testified “that in Canada, a city as big as Chicago had 60,000 people living within a similar footprint.” If any of you leaseholders live in northern Tipton County, when does your backyard ever sound like downtown Chicago? Also, my aging parents are not made up purely of human tissue. Like many high-risk residents, such as children, elderly or people with health issues, they have pre-existing medical conditions. Why has this nearly 100-turbine industrial wind farm proposal been in the works since 2009, and not one survey has been conducted by the county, nor juwi, nor the leaseholders, to identify high-risk residents, especially those living within the proposed wind farm footprint?

Wind farms are great on large tracks of land, like out in the desert, but people live here. My parents are spending their retirement here, staying in the county they have lived in most of their lives. Now the peaceful enjoyment of their property and retirement years is being put at risk.

How can I sit back and let the greed of the few try and risk everything my parents enjoy in their home surrounded by farmland? Industrial wind farms may be great in some locations where they are not intrusive, but not here. Some of these leaseholder families have been farming in this county for more than 150 years. I’m certain they are in no need of saving, and have their trade down to a fine science. How could these local leaseholders say they have compassion, when they clearly made a cold decision without knowing how many local high-risk neighbors they are asking to live within the footprint of an industrial wind farm? That’s more disrespectful than reading an opposing view in the newspaper.

Where is the compassion? Where is the survey to protect every resident, even the leaseholders, if they do in fact live within the footprint?

Matt Jarvis

Sharpsville