Cohocton Wind Watch: Dangers of windmills outweigh benefits
Cohocton Wind Watch is a community citizen organization dedicated to preserve the public safety, property values, economic viability, environmental integrity and quality of life in Cohocton, NY and in surrounding townships. Neighbors committed to public service in order to achieve a reasonable vision for a Finger Lakes region worthy of future generations.


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Saturday, December 13, 2008

Dangers of windmills outweigh benefits

I am all for alternative energy sources as long as they will enhance our lives and the life of our planet. Admittedly, those "windmills" sound like a great idea: free wind, energy for the community, an economic boon in these troubled times, especially for farmers who have suffered much over recent years.

The Concerned Residents of Hammond has looked at the research, interviewed experts, heard testimonials, watched the videos and learned the true dangers that are beneath the surface.

Landowners will benefit, yes. They will receive money for each 500-foot tower they allow on their property. Yes, that's 500 feet. The community, however, will not benefit. No reduction in energy bills, no income, no electricity.

What the citizens of this town will get is a long list of negative impacts, which the companies will not disclose prior to leasing. Before the towers are even in operation, properties will suffer major damage from tons of equipment being dragged through fields and woodlands. Drilling may cause damage to wells, septic systems and foundations.

Once running (and they don't always run), noise from the turbines, flicker effect and low-level vibrations have been shown to have detrimental effects on sleep and health, particularly to those most at risk: the elderly, those with pre-existing medical conditions such as migraines or high blood pressure, and kids with learning disabilities.

If the turbines catch fire (and they do), the local fire department is not equipped to battle a 500-foot spinning flame-thrower. Communities that have already succumbed to the companies have seen property values plummet. Not to mention that our beautiful fields, plateaus and river views will be marred forever. The list goes on. Just log on to any number of Web sites for documentation and you'll get the idea.

Perhaps the most insidious damage has only just begun. In this small, close-knit community, divisiveness has already taken hold. Many residents fear that their neighbors will sign leases without realizing how it may affect the rest of the township. Friends, relatives and neighbors are taking sides. Citizens are losing faith in a local governing board that seems to have taken the dive without checking the dangers first. Fortunately, CROH has been there to help us evaluate the pros and cons of this expensive, life-altering process. We need to work together to protect our way of life, our lovely area and our future.

Brooke Stark

Hammond

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Risks of Industrial Wind Turbines is a group of citizens and organizations dedicated to preserve the public safety, property values, economic viability, environmental integrity and quality of life of residents and future generations.

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