Industrial wind calls it NIMBY. Perhaps! But “this problem runs from the arctic to the tip of South America — and that is one helluva big backyard!”

Replying to my thanks for introducing me to Wayne Wegner, Jon Boone said simply, “Glad you enjoy this colloquy of good people.”  What an incredible understatement.

Both are highly respected, knowledgeable and multi-talented environmentalists.  They are separated by the the US/Canada border and bound by their fervent desire to protect nature.  And each, with nothing personal to gain, give of their time to educate any who will pause to learn, or, as Mr. Boone aptly described my first conversation with Mr. Wegner, “nourished by new information from wonderful minds.

Mr. Boone contributes greatly to Allegheny Treasures and does so again, by recommending Mr. Wegner’s excellent presentation, “Location, Location, Location … Migration, Migration, Migration.”  Mr. Wegner’s presentation comes to us courtesy of the excellent and comprehensive web site – Wind Concerns Ontario, which is not only “Bringing Sanity to Wind Development in Ontario” but, with quality productions such as this effort, to all of North America.

When you view the extensive content of this work, granted to us with Wind Concerns Ontario’s simple instruction, “What I want is for the message to get out there far and wide.  With Wayne’s blessing, please use the piece to help educate people however you can,” you will begin to understand Mr. Boone’s comment about colloquy of good people.”  We thank them for allowing us to post.

In preparing the post, I learned that Mr. Wegner is an Environmental Scientist with an Honours Graduate degree and has spent many years as a wildlife photographer, traveling from one coast of Canada to the other, and north to south as well.  He also mentioned he has no wind projects anywhere near him.

Hmmm…not one of the NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) crowd, Mr. Wegner?  “I view the whole country as my backyard but have a special place in my heart for Canada’s Deep South, especially Lake Erie’s north shore.

So, what drives him?  “I currently live in Alberta but was raised in Essex County, Ontario at the end of the migratory funnel that sweeps through the province.  I am appalled that the thought of plonking anything industrial into the Great Lakes — let alone 400-foot-high turbines — comes as easily to developers as asking someone to pass the salt at the dinner table.  Are people in government all asleep at the wheel?  The landscape onshore has been altered by man for hundreds of years, but the Great Lakes are, in appearance at least, almost pristine.  Disrupting them with industrialization is akin to slashing the face of the Mona Lisa. Am I the only one that feels that way? I don’t believe so!”

There are many of us here in the States that agree with you and we appreciate that you permit us to publish your work to share your experience and knowledge.  “Anything we can do to help you folks out in the Allegheny Highlands is almost a mandatory action. We’re all in this mess together.

And, something I didn’t touch on in that rant is the huge concern around the Mexican coastline where the hawks and other migrants concentrate in absolutely staggering numbers.  If you look at Thelander’s Magnitude Map I have on page 3, you’ll see where the real trouble spot and bottleneck is. And guess what?  Yup, “IWTs” are planned for there, too!

This is truly an international problem, one that so many developers and local/state/provincial governments pooh-pooh as a NIMBY issue in order to slide the deals through.  This problem runs from the arctic to the tip of South America — and that is one helluva big backyard!”

Enjoy the work of Mr. Wayne Wegner!

Any final comment?  “Wind is not the answer to the energy consumption problems we face in the developed world.

Thank you, Mr. Wegner!

Thanks again to Mr. Jon Boone – Environmentalist, Artist, Author, Documentary Producer, and Formal Intervenor in Wind Installation Hearings, and dedicated to educating citizens about the impact of industrial wind.

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1 Response to Industrial wind calls it NIMBY. Perhaps! But “this problem runs from the arctic to the tip of South America — and that is one helluva big backyard!”

  1. Allegheny Front Alliance says:

    NIMBY…Wonderful…story, it helps to see humanity as one family, living on a single planet amide a shared universe. It does point out from the North to South poles…East to West…we do have one big backyard…and it is share by wildlife.

    A large number of folks around the mountain state, “feed the birds” Here in Keyser you can buy bird seed at the grocery stores, hardware, and (The ‘W’ store) Lumber companies sell bird feeders. The point is people do care about wildlife. It does matter and people are willing to pay for q unique wildlife experience.

    Hawk Mountain: Celebrating 75 Years of Raptor Conservation, 1934-2009. Located in east-central Pennsylvania, Hawk Mountain is the world’s first refuge for birds of prey. Open year-round, visitors enjoy scenic vistas, 8-miles of ridge and valley trails, a Visitor Center, Bookstore, and native plant garden, and each autumn, the chance to observe large numbers of hawks, eagle and falcons as they migrate past our lookouts. Operating as a non-profit eco-tourism site, your trail fee or membership dues directly support scientific research, public education and Sanctuary maintenance.

    I wonder if the City of Keyser or the County Economic Development ever considered establishing an eco-green job activities related to hawk / eagle watching near Pinnacle Knob?

    At the AES New Creek, Greg Trainer, suggested local landowners considered leasing their land for other purposes. There is far more money in promoting eco-tourism than Industrial Wind Turbines can offer and it will not ‘tie up land use’ for future generations.

    If you never visited Pinnacle Knob, it is beautiful view. The views reach into Virginia and Maryland, perhaps Pennsylvania. With many ‘baby boomers’ nearing the age to rush the retirement gates, bird watching might be on their list…not to mention visiting unique areas.

    With some area wide planning, I bet that the WV DNR and other conservation groups and private enterprise could develop a first class experience in our area. You could include a partnership with Potomac State College, where visitors could have learning weekends, taught by adjunct instructors. Students could gain experience in interpretation.

    Dan’s Mountain, Pinnacle Knob, Dolly Sods, Spruce Knob, and beautiful Pendleton County offer some excellent lookout sites. Offer the experience in a package, bus tours; combine with local Bed / Breakfast, motels, and some local restaurants and a first class weekend could be offered. I am sure motor cycle parties and private cars would also enjoy the experience.

    I wonder how many folks would consider spending a few hours watching the fall and Spring Migration and learning about this activity. The conditions for eco-tourism in the Mountain State are high.

    AFA is NIMBY…because the entire need to Industrial Wind, LLC would just disappear if the federal – state wind tax goodies were removed. Industrial Wind Turbine, LLC threatens nations’s backyard, front yard and side yards.

    Let us hope that the US Fish and Wildlife Service and WV DNR will have the guts to stand up against the proposed Pinnacle Project at New Page, and insist that US Wind Force to apply for Take Permit the same as Beechridge Project is asking.

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