From National Review
Citizens in 20 localities rejected wind-power expansion
by Robert Bryce | May 12, 2017 4:00 AM | @pwrhungry
Big Wind’s lobbyists and promoters love to claim that their projects are being welcomed by rural communities everywhere. The reality is rather different. Last Tuesday, voters in 20 rural towns in Michigan went to the polls and rejected or restricted the expansion of wind energy.
Furthermore, those same Michigan voters soundly rejected two projects being promoted by the world’s largest producer of wind energy, NextEra Energy — which, as I discussed on this site last week, has been suing rural governments in multiple states (two of them in Michigan) while at the same time collecting billions of dollars in federal tax subsidies.
Big Wind’s worst drubbing occurred in Sand Beach Township, in Huron County, where voters approved modifications to a township ordinance that will effectively ban wind development. The vote tally: 413–80. In addition, Lincoln Township voters approved an initiative that will allow it to form its own planning commission, a move that will make it far more difficult for wind projects to be developed in the township. Sand Beach and Lincoln were among 18 townships in Huron County that gunned down Big Wind’s expansion plans. (Huron County is about 130 miles due north of Detroit.) Voters in the other 16 townships went to the polls as a group and rejected two projects, including a 60-turbine project proposed by NextEra and a 70-turbine project being pushed by DTE Energy. Both proposals lost by a margin of 63 to 37 percent.
Read more here.
Local to the editor of The First Street Journal, Atlantic Wind wants to build a 37-turbine wind farm off of Hatchery Road, in Carbon County, which locals are fighting.1
By Robert Bryce | Published July 14, 2016 | Fox News/Opinion
If you need another example of the growing backlash against the encroachment of the wind industry, consider this: residents of Penn Forest Township, Pennsylvania, are booing the Sierra Clubbers.
On June 23, residents of Penn Forest Township, which sits near the heart of the Pocono Mountains, turned out for a zoning hearing on a 37-turbine wind project proposed to be built on land owned by the Bethlehem Authority, the financial arm of the City of Bethlehem’s water system. The next day, Nicole Radzievich, a reporter for the Morning Call , (based in Allentown) published an article on the hearing, held at a local fire station, which she reported was “packed to capacity with mainly critics.”
Radzievich added that “nearly 300 opponents” of the proposed wind project “hurled boos” at Pennsylvania Sierra Club’s Donald Miles for supporting the wind project, “and applauded verbal jabs against the wind energy company, Iberdrola Renewables.”
Of course, the backlash in Penn Forest Township and dozens of other towns, counties, and villages against the encroachment of wind energy doesn’t fit the popular-media narrative. Wind energy, we are constantly told, is “green” or “clean.” That same narrative, which is endlessly pushed by the Green/Left claims that we’ll have to install forests of wind turbines all across the countryside (and we’ll have to put thousands of them offshore, too) if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change.
Those may be the claims, but the opposition in Penn Forest Township provides a vivid example of how the land-grabbing subsidy-fueled energy sprawl of the wind industry is being met by a burgeoning backlash that can be seen from Maine to California and New York to Loch Ness. Over the past 18 months, according to published media stories, more than 100 governmental entities in about two dozen US states have moved to reject or restrict the development of wind-energy projects.
In 2015, more than 60 governmental entities in 22 states moved to reject or restrict wind-energy developments with a total capacity of some 3,100 megawatts. During the first six months of 2016, more than 40 governmental entities in 18 states have rejected or moved to restrict the installation of wind energy facilities having a total capacity of more than 2,400 megawatts.
There’s more at the original.
Now, who could possibly be opposed to a project which generates electricity without emissions, virtually without pollution? Well, the stories above are all from those wicked red states, states carried by the odious Donald Trump. Then again, it was the liberals in Massachusetts, led by the Kennedy family, who killed the Cape Wind project, because it would upset their precious seaside views; The Boston Globe tried to deflect that, blaming it all on the developers, rather than the wealthy libs.
One important truth here: wind turbine farms are entirely rural projects, and the rural areas were President Trump’s greatest area of strength. The urban areas, where the Democrats get the vast majority of their votes, are places where wind turbines simply cannot be built. When the left support the development of wind energy, they are supporting something which will not be built where they can see it. When such a thing was proposed where the liberals could see it, the Kennedy family jumped right in to oppose it. The Obama Administration tried to push for more wind power, with subsidies are regulations changes, things which could only cause residents of the areas in which such wind farms are built to be opposed.I admit it: I’d be wholly opposed to wind turbines fouling the view from our farm in the Bluegrass State! Obviously, I’d never sell or lease my land to wind power developers, but to the right of the ‘foreground’ trees in the photo is land we do not own, and I would fight such development on that land.2
That said, I would not be opposed to solar power generation, as long as it was reasonably screened from view. But solar panels are set close to ground level, and can be screened off, while wind turbines must extend high into the air.3 The local solar farm, off of Pennsylvania Route 54 west of Nesquehoning, is mostly hidden from the road by trees.
This is just another reason why Donald Trump is President of the United States. The voters outside of the urban areas recognize that the left, so heavily concentrated in the cities, want to impose laws and regulations which will affect other people more than themselves. When the left want to impose higher fuel taxes, the impact will be greater on people who have further to drive; when the left want to impose some form of carbon emission penalties, it will cost people living outside of cities more money.NIMBY: Not in my back yard! The left don’t care about putting projects in other people’s way, as long as they are not bothered. It’s only when they are bothered — as were the Kennedys — that such becomes a problem for them.
- The Editor does not oppose the wind farm development, but it would not be visible from my residence, and I will be moving to my farm in Kentucky this summer. I have no reason to care. ↩
- Because our farm is river bottom land, surrounded by mountains and the Daniel Boone National Forest, it would not be well suited for wind turbines; the lay of the land stifles some of the breeze. ↩
- My wife has suggested mounting solar panels on the south-facing roof of the garage. These would not be visible from the road, which is on the north side of the property. We have not taken a decision on that so far. ↩