Saturday, January 14, 2006

Close door on wind power developers

To the editor, Rutland (Vt.) Herald:

On January 6 a letter stated that big wind could provide up to 20 percent of our power needs. If all of the current proposals (up to 312 MW) around the state were built, they would provide at most only 10 percent or our current (ignoring future growth) power needs. Each of the facilities would drasticallyhttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif alter the character of the landscape for miles around with visual prominence, distracting motion, noise, and all-night strobe lights, degrade and fragment miles of wildlife habitat, and threaten endangered bats. They are all being actively opposed (see www.rosenlake.net/vwv).

Since it is unlikely that we will reach 10 percent wind, it is even more unlikely that we would allow building even more to get us to 20 percent.

Even if it works as advertised, big wind will never be a significant part of our power mix. It is common sense, not the governor alone, that is trying shut the door on such fruitless industrialization of our ridgelines.

A letter from Pennsylvania on January 7 claimed that big wind is working in that state. The writer called support of large-scale wind power a "no-brainer" because it replaces dirty energy sources. Those of us who still use our brains, however, would like to see the data showing what energy sources have actually been replaced.

After researching this issue for 3 years, I have yet to see any such evidence that wind power on the grid reduces the use of other fuels.

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