After doing research, Barre resident backs wind energy project
I was on the fence for a long time about the wind farm project in Barre. It wasn’t until a group of people in this town started going door to door and speaking at town meetings that I decided to take a really good look at this project and wind farms in general.
I saw my friends and neighbors who had signed up for leases and our town board being constantly criticized and harassed. When I started my research, I found that almost all of the so-called “facts” about negative impacts of wind turbines are put out by a few large groups of anti-wind activists.
Let me tell you, there is a lot of money and power behind some of these groups. It does take some digging, but most of the time you can find this same information was already posted somewhere by some other anti-group and sometimes even backed by the fossil fuel industry.
I have not found a shred of scientific evidence in a peer-reviewed study which supports the claims of the anti-wind groups. On the flip side, there are many studies that show that if people believe that wind turbines will make them sick, then they probably will get some sort of effect from them.
I have negative health effects every time I attend a town board meeting. Every time I hear people call my friends, neighbors and even my husband stupid, selfish, uneducated farmers, corrupt, greedy.
The anti-wind folks would like everyone to think that they are victims, when in fact they have mocked, ridiculed, snickered and laughed while others are speaking at meetings. If I thought seriously for a moment that wind turbines would hurt my neighbors, birds or wildlife, I would be opposed, but the information just does not support the claims that they would.
Do I think that wind turbines are going to save the world or even Barre? No. Do I think we need to do something to change how we get our power and what we are doing to the Earth? Yes! Do I think this project will benefit the entire community? Yes.
Listen, our governor, like it or not, has an agenda to make 70 percent of power in New York come from renewable energy by 2030. We can either have our town, county and schools benefit from this or we can drive through some other town that has embraced it.
Before I believe anything that is sent to me in the mail, at a town meeting or in a Facebook post, I will do my own research. Whether it is someone asking for my vote or asking to put a wind farm near my home. Ask questions.
I am by no means trying to belittle anyone’s concerns. I am just asking that we all take a step back, research. Talk to your town board. Look outside of our little part of the world at what can make a difference for everyone.
Barre resident for 26 years