A bit of humour in wind turbine myths

 

Dear Editor,

I have now heard everything! Wind turbines are going to affect the students of Nationview Public School (as suggested in a letter, published in the Wed., May 9 edition of the Winchester Press). Let’s not mention what the iPhone, iPod, Nintendo DS, and too much reality TV, and a lack of good old fashioned hard work is doing to our kids. This unfounded fear mongering is quite funny.

Just last week, I was working on a new piece of property and cleaning some brush. I thought I would be neighbourly and stop in to introduce myself. 

I barely got off the tractor when the lady stated she was totally against wind turbines. 

I followed by asking her if she had ever seen a turbine. She replied that she had not. I replied that I had seen many and talked to many people that had windmills, and they were completely happy with having them. I said that I thought they were beautiful pieces of technology and that we could be sitting underneath one and that the noise wouldn’t even affect our conversation. 

She then went on that she got all her information from the newspaper.

The fact is, these machines are air in, air out; they will not cause cancer, they will not pollute your water, and they are quieter then your refrigerator. From 550 meters in the middle of a field, you will never hear them. 

The Highway 401 noise pollution is much louder; so is a train passing by, an airplane or helicopter flying overhead, a lawn mower, a whipper snipper, a television, or a stereo, and we all live with these machines every day.

The fact is that everybody loves to plug in their two computers, two phones, three TVs, microwaves, iPods, and cell phones. People need to wake up. 

The global population in 1945 was under two billion people; we are now more than seven billion and by 2050 are projected to be a whopping 9 billion. 

We need new sources of energy — clean and renewable. 

Wind turbines are carbon neutral within nine months of their operation. I’m not saying that wind is the answer to all our energy needs, but it is the start of new technologies — better, cleaner technologies.

Green energy is being criticized for being too expensive. What alternative isn’t — big oil, nuclear energy, gas, coal… These are all big polluters and heavily subsidized by your tax dollars. 

Some say we could buy all the power we need from Quebec for five cents per kilowatt-hour — but for how long? Sure we could. That would be negative five cents to Ontario. Wind is 11 cents for 20 years — what a bargain! 

These projects are privately funded by companies investing tens of millions of dollars in your communities. 

The projects result in tax dollars for local schools and hospitals, local power and local jobs, lease payments to farmers — all money spent locally.

Then there are people crying that not enough studies are being done. They are uninformed because there are health studies, plus bat, bird, noise, flicker, water, archaeology, and frog studies preformed, just to name some. 

These studies have accumulated to the tune of $3 million for a 30-megawatt project. 

The problem in Ontario is not green energy, but too much red tape, and government agencies used to implement the red tape — not to mention ignorance and jealousy.

I am one of the proud farmers hosting three of the 12 turbines in the South Branch Wind Farm. They will be directly behind and in front of my house.

I assure you that I would not put my family’s health at risk for a lease payment.

 I know that change is hard, but it is necessary. I have no doubt that history will look brightly upon our decisions to invest in renewable energy. I am a local business owner who’s pro local jobs, pro local economy, pro solar, and pro wind!

Oliver Thurler

 

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