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2/14/10 Wisconsin Dairy Farmer tells it like it is

Windfarms: Irritating, unreliable and unregulated

Green Bay Press-Gazette, www.greenbaypressgazette.com

Jerome Hlinak

February 14 2010

Pro-wind lawmakers claim that green energy jobs are the solution to our economic crisis. We need to widen the view of those with tunnel vision who are only focused on dollar signs and not able to see the negative impact of those who are left to live in the midst of an industrial pinwheel forest.

Last fall legislators gave the state Public Service Commission control over all wind turbine projects, but the PSC has yet to propose standards. This will take till July 2011 at the soonest to complete, long after several wind turbine projects will be permitted and in operation. If the PSC would set standards for health and safety based on engineering facts, many of the proposed wind turbine projects around the state would be affected.

Last month the PSC approved the Glacier Hills Wind project in Columbia County. The commission ignored engineering facts that supported public health and safety. Testimony from those who live near turbines in other parts of the state also were ignored.

With residents living in a PSC-regulated hell in Fond du Lac County certain to file claims in court, the Assembly now wants to create legislation to discontinue online court records. In Kewaunee County houses near turbines have been bulldozed. If wind energy is promoted to be so good, why do land-lease agreements have confidentiality clauses?

Assembly energy committee members from Green Bay include Reps. Jim Soletski and Phil Montgomery. They, along with Sen. Jeff Plale of Milwaukee, who was the author of the bill to take away local control, claim that they will create green energy jobs.

PSC data estimates that wind energy will cost electric customers more than $15 billion. Does this make sense when Wisconsin has an excess generation capacity of 30 percent and our debt is growing out of control?

As people get educated on wind turbines, opposition continues to grow in the Invenergy project in Brown County. Contracts are now being signed in northern Manitowoc County and southern Kewaunee County with a company called Element Energy. The majority of people in these areas are unaware of what is to come and need to not become victims of the PSC political agenda.

We need to let legislators know that a statewide moratorium is needed until safe standards are in place. Wind energy's capacity factor is only about 20 percent.

With the majority of energy committee members from city districts, is it possible that the campaign contributions from tax-funded wind lobbyists are more important than the health and safety of people in rural areas?

Jerome Hlinak is a Tisch Mills dairy farmer and member of WINDCOWS (Wisconsin Independent Citizens Opposing Windturbine Sites)



Posted on Sunday, February 14, 2010 at 09:00AM by Registered CommenterThe BPRC Research Nerd | Comments Off

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