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2/14/11 Be a Sweetheart and contact these legislators AND Our Video of the Day AND Residents say Tell it to the Judge: Lawsuit filed against Town of Forest, alleging under-the-radar granting of turbine permits AND Who are the losers in the Big Wind game?



Call the numbers or click on the links below to contact members of the joint committee to thank them for holding last weeks hearing on the PSC's wind siting rules and to ask that the rules be suspended. (Read more ...)

Senator Leah Vukmir (Chair) (R- Wauwatosa) 266-2512, Sen.Vukmir@legis.wisconsin.gov
Representative Jim Ott (Chair) (R- Mequon) 266-0486, Rep.OttJ@legis.wisconsin.gov
Senator Joseph Leibham (R- Sheboygan) 266-2056, Sen.Leibham@legis.wisconsin.gov

Senator Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend) 266-7513, Sen.Grothman@legis.wisconsin.gov

Senator Lena Tayor (D-Milwaukee) 266-5810, Sen.Taylor@legis.wisconsin.gov

Senator Fred Risser (D-Madison) 266-1627, Sen.Risser@legis.wisconsin.gov
Representative Dan LeMahieu (R-Cascade) 266-9175, Rep.lemahieu@legis.wisconsin.gov  
Representative Gary Hebl (D-Sun Prairie) 266-7678,  Rep.hebl@legis.wisconsin.gov 
Representative Fred Kessler (D-Milwaukee) 266-5813, Rep.kessler@legis.wisconsin.gov  

Don't forget to include your name and address.

Click on the image above to hear wind turbine noise that includes a whistle. To see a picture of the family living beside these turbines, scroll down. [SOURCE]



Town of Forest (WQOW) - A dispute over wind turbines has now turned into a lawsuit. 

This week, a citizen group filed a lawsuit against the Town of Forest.  That's north of Glenwood City. An energy company is looking to build more than three dozen wind turbines on various properties in the area.  The board approved the measure last year, but residents say they were kept in the dark about the plans.  

The group is concerned about diminished land values and noise pollution from the turbines, which could be up to 500 feet tall.  The group is asking for a permanent injunction to stop the building of the turbines.

´╗┐NOTE FROM THE BPWI RESEARCH NERD: Emerging Energies is said to be the wind developer in this project. One of the founders of Emerging Energies is Bill Rakocy, pictured here. Rakocy is on the PSC's wind siting council.


Bill Rakocy's company, Emerging Energies, recently put up 500 foot tall turbines in the Town of Glenmore in Brown County. The Shirley Wind project hosts the tallest wind turbines in the state.

Better Plan recently received this email from Steve Deslauriers, a Brown County resident who recently visited a home in this wind project.

"I was graciously invited to go to a neighbor's home that is within approximately 3400 feet of 3 of the 500 foot tall Shirley Wind turbines (the closest being approximately 2700 feet from their home).  

They can see 6 of the turbines from their home - the farthest being miles away.

 The couple built this home and has lived there for 30 plus years and is now in their mid/upper 60's.  They wanted me to experience the effect the turbines are having on them.  

I drove up their driveway and got out of my car.  I looked around and the presence of the 3 closest turbines are very imposing.  I listened and could hear the thrumming of the blades and the whir of the gearboxes, but the noise I could hear has was not particularly loud - the wind speed this morning was 10mph so a pretty calm day.

I walked up to the door and was invited in the house to see the wife wearing industrial earmuffs in her kitchen which she removed right away when I walked in.  She went to the doctor this week due to ear pain (a new condition) and the earmuffs help - Doctor found nothing physically wrong.

The husband asked me to sit in his rocker and just left me alone for a while.  I heard the whir and whoosh, but it was pretty muffled.

 But here is what is scary to me - as I sat there over the course of 10 minutes or so, I could start feeling pressure in my right ear (facing the window that faced the turbines).  This was not expected.  At first, it was just "weird", but the longer I stayed, the more unsettling it was.

After a while the husband and I walked outside around their home.  As we walked on the side of the home, he stopped and I immediately said to him "I know why you stopped here!".  

It was a strange phenomenon - that place at that moment, I felt the same 'pressure' he did - must be from how the house is situated, wind direction, etc.  

I thought this was very weird so I walked back to the front of the house and came back to that spot a number of times and the same sensation was present each time.  It is hard to describe but there is a difference in pressure that you feel in your head.  The pressure feeling was present in most places, but particularly bad in some.

The longer I stayed at their home the more unsettled I became.  I honestly don't know how else to describe it.  Unsettled is the best way - the physical feeling of pressure in my ears did not go away, and the longer we visited, it felt like pressure was being felt in my temples.

 This is a feeling that my body was telling me was not good, and quite frankly, I did NOT want to stay.  Not because of any lack of hospitality, but the feeling that was in my head was not pleasant at all.  It triggered a flight response in me - I wanted to leave.  This on a day of 10mph winds....

This couple has offered to invite anyone to their house to experience this first hand.  Plan to spending some time there - my body's reaction worsened over time (that is this couples experience as well when they return after being gone a while).  

Bring a magazine or newspaper and sit in the husband's chair.  While I can't say your reaction will be the same, it is worth your time.  Even this couple's reaction to the sound/pressure is different, so sure it will affect each of you in different ways.

This is my first visit of any length inside an affected home and it was eye opening.  The setback and wind speeds were certainly not even close to the worst it could be, and despite that, I wanted OUT! ...  I could not live there.


-Wind developer Gary Haltaufderheide speaking to residents in Rock County, Wisconsin regarding concerns about impacts to non-participating landowners:

 In any wind project, "There are always going to to be winners and losers"


These are the losers. This family, these children-- now living with noise and shadow flicker  from poorly sited turbines. Read about what has happened to their lives since the turbines went on line by CLICKING HERE to visit their website


"The retired 61-year-old furniture maker said the turbines give him nausea by aggravating inner-ear and balance problems he’s had since a 1966-67 tour in Vietnam subjected him to the constant pounding of an Army 155-mm artillery piece. I cannot live where I’m living now with these decibels and vibrations,” he said. [SOURCE]

"Builders say they’re quiet, and Meyer said he believed that – until he stepped outside and looked up for the jet flying over. It was the new turbine nearby. Depending on wind and humidity, any of the five turbines within a mile of his house obtrude on the quiet, whining or thumping “like boots in the dryer.” Within weeks, his wife and son started having chronic headaches. His wife now suffers constant ringing in her ears. It vanished on vacation. Meyer no longer sleeps much –" [SOURCE]

"They're just too close to people." Allen Hass, 56, a Malone farmer, told the paper the rent he got for hosting a turbine couldn't make up for headaches. "I wish I never made that deal," he said. [SOURCE]

"Emmett Curley has enjoyed living in the area for 15 years, but says things have become unbearable since the wind turbines arrived a year ago. "Last summer when it started, I left my house. I just couldn't stand it.   I've had friends over that left during the situation, saying, 'I'm starting to get a headache,'" Curley said Friday. The problem comes when the sun sets and its light passes through the turbines, creating a flickering effect of shadow and light. It lasts for about an hour.  I'm lined up with two turbines that give me a double flicker. You can't watch TV, you can't read a book, a newspaper, you can't work on a computer because your eyes are constantly adjusting to light and dark," he said. "Green energy is a great thing, but when it interferes with life, health — no, something has to be done." [SOURCE]

"Obviously, the community has been torn apart because of this project," [Morrison Town Chairman] Christensen said. You have brothers not talking to brothers, fathers and sons not talking. It's sad. … Everybody has all the right to debate (an) opinion with fact, but do it with respect. That hasn't been happening."[SOURCE]

Ms Godfrey said she suffered sleep deprivation, headaches and nausea before moving out in April 2010 when Acciona purchased her property. It was like you had a hat on that’s too tight and you have a pain that just gets worse and worse, and you can’t take it off,” Ms Godfrey said. “There was pain most of the time.” [SOURCE]

"Glenbrae farming couple Carl and Sam Stepnell walked away from their nine-year-old home last week, claiming turbines near their property were making them sick.Mrs Stepnell, 37, said she began to suffer symptoms immediately after turbines were turned on near her house 14 months ago. “I’ve never suffered anything like it before,” she said.“Instant pressure in the ears and in the head, inability to sleep. The trouble is that it is not like a broken arm or leg. You can’t see it. Some nights the noise was unbearable. You cannot relax. You can’t get to sleep.” [SOURCE]

“They told us we wouldn’t hear it, or that it would be masked by the sound of the wind blowing through the trees,” said Sally Wylie, a former schoolteacher down the road from the Lindgrens. “I feel duped.” [SOURCE]

“I’m getting vibrations, and I haven’t slept in I don’t know how long,” Mrs. Garrow said. “But I don’t think anybody’s looking out for our interest.” [SOURCE]

Here, it is not just the constant noise, but the pulsing drone that makes the noise particularly hostile that is so disturbing. It is inescapable. [ SOURCE]

“I had problems with my heart, with my eyes, my digestive system,” Marshall told CTV News. “It traumatizes your whole body.” [SOURCE]

Future Losers:

“While I support the overall [wind] rule because it will promote the development of wind in Wisconsin, the rule fails to provide a much-needed safety net for people whose health declines because of a wind turbine located near their home,”  -PSC Commissioner Lauren Azar [SOURCE]

“It appears for some people that their blood pressure first thing in the morning is elevated if the turbines are going, and is not elevated if the turbine have been off overnight and early in the morning,” Dr Laurie said. Dr Laurie said early-morning blood pressure elevation was a known risk factor for heart attacks."[SOURCE]

“If large-scale wind energy plants would be sited in areas of intense vegetable production, the result could be devastating crop losses,” said Tamas Houlihan of the state Potato and Vegetable Growers Association. [SOURCE]

"...a nearby nursing home called Golden Living Center, based on calculations done by the applicant and the town’s engineer, are expected to experience the light-shadow play of flicker for more than the 30 hours per year the wind industry’s informal standard, noted Samuelson." [SOURCE]

“Bird deaths from wind power are the new inconvenient truth. The total number of birds killed and the amount of bird habitat lost will dramatically increase as wind power build-out continues across the country in a rush to meet federal renewable energy targets,” [SOURCE]

"A real estate agent says many of her customers don't want to live near wind farms, which has caused home values to drop in those areas.Beth Einsele of Beth Einsele Real Estate in Shabbona said she has shown her share of properties near Lee County wind farms. She said the houses there can't sell for as much as similar homes in other areas of the county." [SOURCE]

“We are a hard working young family — my partner has shed blood, sweat and tears to make that property what it is today,” Mr Manning told The Border Watch. She literally cried when she began to comprehend what the wind farm’s impact will have on our future plans, including the future development of our investment, our retirement, in terms of the potential for the property and the personal connection we have with it.” [SOURCE]


 “Wind farms ‘make people sick who live up to a mile away’”.

 January 25, 2004. Telegraph.

 “Family says turbine vibrations made them ill enough to move”.

 May 13, 2006. Hamilton Spectator.

“Could Wind Turbines Be A Health Hazard?”

  October 12, 2006. WHAM-TV..

 “Quietly sounding alarm; Forced from home after noise from wind farm turbines made family sick, d’Entremont telling others his story”.

August 27, 2007 Chronicle Herald

 “Neighbors claim wind turbine makes them ill”

 July 29, 2008. WFAA-TV. 

 “Wind turbines cause health problems, residents say”.

 September 28, 2008. CTV

“Neighbors at odds over noise from wind turbines”

November 3, 2008. USA Today

“Wind farms: Is there a hidden health hazard?”

November 14, 2008. KATU-TV

 “NW Missouri man sues Deere, wind energy company”.

February 3, 2009. Associated Press.

 “Something in the Wind as Mystery Illnesses Rise”.

February 6, 2009. Asahi Shimbun.

 “Wind farms: Interview of Malone and Johnsburg residents”.

March 2, 2009. Morning Show, KFIX.

 “Loud as the wind: Wind tower neighbors complain of noise fallout”.

March 8, 2009 East Oregonian.

“Wind Turbines Driving People From Their Homes”.

A-News, CTV

“Wind turbines causing health problems, some Ont. residents say”.

April 14, 2009 CBC Radio One.

 “Noise, Shadows Raise Hurdles For Wind Farms”

April 21, 2009 Wall Street Journal.

 “Reports of wind farm health problems growing”

April 22, 2009 CTV

 “Formal study needed into health effects of wind turbines, doctor says”.

(April 23, 2009). CBC News.

 “Daughter’s Earaches Blamed On Wind Farm”.

A-News, CTV Globe Media.

 “Survey points to health woes arising from wind turbines”.

May 5, 2009 Peter Epp

 “Is public’s health blowing in the wind?”.

May 7, 2009 Western News.

 “Wind turbines blamed for adverse health effects”.

May 13, 2009 The Epoch Times.

 “Does wind turbine noise affect your sleep or health?”

May 15, 2009 WLBZ2.

 “Health can be a key issue when living near wind farm”.

May 23, 2009. Southern Illinoisan.

 “Solutions sought for turbine noise”.

June 4, 2009 Huron Daily Tribune.

 “Wind turbine noise is rattling some residents in Michigan’s Thumb”

June 11, 2009 Bay City Times.

 “Wind Farms Ruining Quality of Life?”.

June 19, 2009 WNEM.

 “St. Columban residents get informed on wind turbine health concerns”.

June 24, 2009. Lucknow Sentinel.

 “Wind turbine noise ‘forces’ couple out”.

 July 15, 2009.A BC News

 “Are wind farms a health risk? US scientist identifies ‘wind turbine syndrome’”.

August 2, 2009. The Independent.

 “Living near a wind farm can cause heart disease, panic attacks and migraines”.

August 2, 2009. Daily Mail

 “Discontent of Mars Hill Residents Leads to Lawsuit Against First Wind”.

August 7, 2009. Maine Public Broadcasting Network.

 “Migraine, Wind Turbine Connection Still Being Examined”.

August 11, 2009. KESQ.

 “Mars Hill windmills prompt civil lawsuit”

.August 12, 2009. Bangor Daily News.

 “Farmers flee as turbines trigger despair”.

August 22, 2009. The Australian.

 “No relief for land owners affected by wind farms”.

August 24, 2009 The Australian.

“Govt urged to probe wind farm illness claims”

August 28, 2009 ABC news

 “Anger over wind turbine noise”.

September 7, 2009 Weekly Times

 “Living near turbines is ‘mental torture’, Carlisle inquiry told”.

October 22, 2009 News & Star.

 “Living by wind farms no breeze, some say”.

November 24, 2009 Detroit Free Press

 “Officials cover up wind farm noise report”.

December 13, 2009 Sunday Times.

 “Wind tower neighbor bought out for health reasons”.

December 30, 2009. Chronicle.

 “Wind turbines: Expert says people are suffering health problems from being too close to structures”.

January 16, 2010. Whig-Standard.

 “Sickness claims prompt study of wind turbines”.

January 16, 2010. Whig-Standard.

 “Claims of wind farm illness”.

 “The Brewing Tempest Over Wind Power”.

March 1, 2010. Wall Street Journal.

. “Wind Farms Causing Health Problems?”.

 March 4, 2010 Fox Business

“Landowners sue Invenergy over Forward Wind Energy Center”.

April 1, 2010. Daily Reporter.

 “Effects of turbines in question”.

April 12, 2010 Concord Monitor.

 “Oakfield couple files PSC complaint over wind farm”.

April 18, 2010. Fond du Lac Reporter.

 “Couple driven out by noisy wind turbines sue ″.

April 19, 2010. Daily Mirror.

 “Wind farm property sells at sheriff’s sale”.

Snyder, Paul May 6, 2010. Daily Reporter.

“Hospital hosts wind debate”

 May 7, 2010. Rutland Herald

 “Another health problem caused by turbines”.

May 26, 2010. Watertown Daily Times

 “Sick residents claim wind farm ‘torture’”

May 27, 2010 Herald Sun.

 “Homeowners File Lawsuit Over Wind Turbines”.

May 28, 2010 WNEM.

 “An ill wind blows in”.

May 29, 2010. The Standard.

 “Falmouth wind-turbine noise has local residents whirling”.

June 2, 2010. Boston Herald


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