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Wind energy does have its place, but not near people's homes

  • Published in Letters

To The Daily Sun,

My name is Steve Young, Jr., a tax paying resident and registered voter in the town of Danbury.

I sincerely hope who ever reads this takes it in into great consideration, after receiving the recent poll results of the ballots that were sent by the selectman of Danbury, I now feel I am speaking on behalf of the majority of the townspeople of Danbury when I say that the Wild Meadows wind project is a bad idea and wrong, not only for the residents of Danbury, but also for our neighbors. Here in Danbury, there is a clear majority of registered voters who strongly oppose this project, the results as you probably already know were 249 to 116.

I am writing today to voice my objection to the Wild Meadows Wind Project. I purchased my land in 2000, cleared it myself and built my own house for my family to live in a quiet rural setting, a place where my children could grow and play in the yard without concern, a place away from city life, industrialization and the noise caused by it. It is a place where you can stand outside on a cold crisp winter evening, look up in amazement at the star filled sky, away from the city lights and a place so quiet you could hear a pin drop. I remember clearing my land, taking a break to eat my lunch sitting on a log, listening to only the sounds of birds chirping and the chipmunks dropping pine cones out of the trees and thinking to myself "Wow, it is so peaceful and quiet here, I can't wait to get this house built", I imagined myself sitting out on my deck and taking in the sounds of nature watching my children play, or gazing up at the night sky, listening to the tree frogs, peepers and the occasional owl.

I sincerely feel this is serene setting is now very threatened by the industrial giants like Iberdrola and their Wind Turbine Projects. If this project moves forward, not only will I be dealing with the noise of the construction phase, but also once completed, the once peaceful quiet evenings spent looking at the stars will now be accompanied by blinking lights, and sounds of industrial wind turbines churning out their horrible tune, at a decibel level stated and confirmed by Iberdrola to be in the range of a "quiet urban evening". I have to tell you that I have relatives who live in an urban setting in Lawrence, Massachusetts and even on their quietest nights, the sounds would drown out any chirping birds, and one would most certainly not be able to hear a pine cone falling from a tree, let alone a pin drop. When they come to visit, to them it is like camping for the weekend, they are in awe of how quiet and peaceful it is here in Danbury.

If I wanted a "quiet urban setting" I would have purchased a house in Lawrence or Manchester and not selected a rural parcel in the country setting of Danbury. I remember at one of the meetings Iberdrola spokespeople mentioned the noise I would hear in my house would "only be similar to a dishwasher running in another room", at least I can turn my dishwasher off if I so chose to end the noise and it doesn't bother my neighbors when it is running.

I feel wind energy has it's place, however allowing the construction of these turbines near people's homes (especially in communities where the majority is against their construction to begin with) is not only irresponsible, but also dangerous to the occupants health and well being of those in close proximity, as has been documented in numerous independent studies. Let alone the impact on property values and the fact that the energy produced is not going to supply homes surrounding the turbines, or even in the same state for that matter. Win turbines will not reduce the number of traditional power plants in operation, as wind is not a constant source of power and when their is little or no wind blowing, the demand for energy does not cease and therefore still needs to be supplied by traditional means. Also, if there was no government subsidies, Iberdrola wouldn't even be pursuing these projects.

Steve Young, Jr.