Wind developers allowed to police themselves? Wisconsin citizens group says not so fast!

URGENT!!!

This just received from our friends Fran Kunz and Lynn Korinek of WINDCOWS (Wisconsin INDependent Citizens Opposing Wind Turbine Sites).

Many of my (Fran Kunz) friends and family know that I have become active in the pursuit of sensible and responsible wind turbine regulations to protect the greater good of all WI citizens. Along with the help of Lynn Korinek, here is an update on the current situation in Wisconsin:

In short, the WI PSC has ignored the documents and studies (from experts from around the world) provided to them and submitted to the docket. It appears they have not even read the docket submissions. The first open docket brought in some 1800 submissions, and the second posted about 100. Of the total 1900+/- submissions it is conservatively estimated that 80% were either factual evidence in favor of stricter siting regulations or citizens’ requests for the same. A PSC employee has stated, “That is the most submissions ever to a single docket.” The committee report stated that no third party or personal accounts submitted were included in the report as they did not pertain to the siting rules.

It was understood that the siting council was supposed to review the existing wind energy ordinances in the state.  This was never discussed at the meetings.  Towns and Counties spent years working on these ordinances, which is far more than the 5 months the siting council was allowed.  These ordinances were written after doing a great amount of research without allowing influence by the financially motivated.  Low frequency noise, a serious negative health effect of industrial wind turbines was never addressed by the council or the PSC.

We can’t allow this industry to self-test in any way.  The wind industry is not regulated and must be overseen, especially when their actions can have such a serious negative effect on health and safety of our good Wisconsin families.   We already have too many non-participating families that are suffering and have no recourse because the developer is “within” the limits that were set by the PSC, or they (the land owner) signed away their rights in a contract with a gag order.

THE NEWEST RULES ALLOW THE DEVELOPER TO DO THEIR OWN NOISE STUDY IF THERE IS A COMPLAINT. IF THE DEVELOPER FINDS THEY/THEMSELVES ARE IN COMPLIANCE, THEY DO NOT HAVE TO DEAL WITH ANY COMPLAINTS FROM THAT LANDOWNER FOR TWO YEARS.

That’s the fox guarding the hen-house!

The minority report from the wind siting council shows that the group was stacked with wind advocates and that they simply pushed their agenda through without regard for health and safety, the very purpose of Act 40 in the first place.

Our property values will drop up to 43% based on Appraisal One Group’s study in Fond Du Lac, WI. The wind industry insists that wind turbines actually increase property values (in spite of clear evidence to the contrary). If that is the case, why are they refusing to agree to a property value protection plan? If property value increases around wind turbines, what have they got to lose?

Commissioner Azar argues in her letter to the legislature that the standards recommended by the PSC do not go far enough in protecting individuals who experience harm from the turbines.

We now have 30 days for public input before the PSC siting rules become law. Now is the time for us to be heard louder than ever.  The clock started ticking August 31st.

This is a very critical time for the members of the two energy committees to hear from us in regards to the wind siting recommendations.

You can also contact WINDCOWS for further assistance at this address – info@windcows.com

CONTACT INFORMATION:

The 4 key people on the Energy committees that should be contacted are:

Senate Committee on Commerce, Utilities, Energy, and Rail:

Jeff Plale (D) Chair 608-266-7505 414-694-7379 (Southeast – Milwaukee)
Robert Wirch (D) 608-266-8979 262-694-7379 (Southeast corner)
Jon Erpenbach (D) 608-266-6670 888-549-0027 (South)
Pat Kreitlow (D) 608-266-7511 (West – Chippewa Falls)
Robert Cowles (R) 608-266-0484 920-448-5092 (Green Bay)
Sheila Harsdorf (R) 608-266-7745 (West Central)
Neal Kedzie (R) 608-266-2635 262-742-2025 (Southeast corner)

The Assembly Committee on Energy and Utilities:

James Soletski (D) Chair 608-266-0485 (Green Bay)
Josh Zepnick (D) 608-266-1707 414-727-0841 (Milwaukee)
Anthony Staskunas (D) 608-266-0620 414-541-9440 (West Allis)
Jon Richards (D) 608-266-0650 414-270-9898 (Milwaukee)
John Steinbrink (D) 608-266-0455 262-694-5863 (Southeast corner)
Joe Parisi (D) 608-266-5342 (Madison)
Ted Zigmunt (D) 608-266-9870 (Wrightstown/Glenmore)
Michael Huebsch (R) 608-266-0631 (West Central)
Phil Montgomery (R) 608-266-5840 920-496-5953 (Green Bay)
Mark Honadel (R) 608-266-0610 414-764-9921 (Milwaukee)
Kevin Peterson (R) 608-266-3794 (Waupaca)
Rich Zipperer (R) 608-266-5120 (Pewaukee)

Allegheny Treasures Note:  The concerned group, WISCONSIN INDEPENDENT CITIZENS OPPOSING WIND TURBINE SITES (WINDCOWS), was formed by a concerned group of citizens to protect the health, safety and well being of all citizens in regards to the siting of industrial wind turbines in the State of Wisconsin.

This entry was posted in Friends and Citizens Groups, Uncategorized, Wind Energy Legislation, Wind Energy Shenanigans and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Wind developers allowed to police themselves? Wisconsin citizens group says not so fast!

  1. John Terry says:

    It is true. The situation regarding wind turbine setbacks in Wisconsin is deplorable. We are currently on the road conducting an unofficial, private citizens study of wind energy sites throughout the central and north western states and Canada. We have visited dozens of wind farms and are about half done with our study. By far, the most egregious turbine locations we have seen in our travels have been in Wisconsin. The problem lies, among other things, with the location of homes within sections of farm land. It appears that, in the past, modest sized farms were broken up to allow for residential development. Among the patchwork of these farms are many two to ten acre home sites. The farmers surrounding these homes have sold out to the wind developers and turbines have been placed on these farms without regard to the proximity to homes. We visited several of these home owners and the damage to health and property values is evident and very real. Homes in the Fond du Lac region of Wisconsin are unsalable even at greatly reduced prices. We saw evidence of a home that had to be abandoned because the health issues outweighed the value of the unsalable property and spoke with others in similar situations.
    We would estimate that homes in the Wisconsin turbine fields are about a half mile apart, with turbines as close as 1000 feet. By contrast houses in wind turbine fields in Minnesota we visited were about a mile apart while those in North Dakota were about five miles apart and those in Alberta, Canada were probably ten miles or more apart.
    We have this crazy idea here in the United States that one size fits all, and that because a wind farm in the North Dakota prairies affects few people or property values, that wind turbine fields in Wisconsin or Maine or West Virginia would have the same minimal effect. It doesn’t take the proverbial rocket scientist to see that this is far from the truth, but it seems to be beyond the grasp of most politicians.
    John & Joan Terry, from the road on the Pacific Coast.

  2. Allegheny Front Alliance says:

    Thank you John and Joan for sharing our observations to readers / and the casual lurkers (including Big Industrial Wind).

    Where is the economic and social justice? There is no measure by the wind industry, or is there any concern by the political forces to consider their voices.

    Read how US Wind Force and its consultant handles the issues, Case No. 09-0360-E-CS, Direct Testimony of James D. Barnes Page 14 of 16

    Question: WHAT DESIGN cONTROL MEASURES ARE INCORPORATED INTO WIND TURBINES TO MITIGATE NOISE, AND HOW HAVE DESIGN CHANGES IN MODERN TURBINES CHANGED THE SOUND OUTPUT FROM EARLIER DESIGNS?

    Mr Barnes Response: “A. Modern industrial turbines are equipped with extensive noise control features, including a noise-insulated enclosure over the gearbox and generator, reduced-noise gearbox,
    vibration isolation mounts, and quieted-design rotor blades. Quite significantly, modern turbines are also of the upwind design, Le., the turbine rotor blades are positioned to be
    upwind of the support tower during operation. Some earlier wind turbine designs that used downwind rotors (rotors downwind of the support tower) produced higher levels of
    low frequency sound. When low frequency sound is substantially greater than the background ambient sound, it may be noticed in the community and can cause
    annoyance. The most significant concern of low frequency sound is that it can induce vibration in a building structure, which may result in rattling china or moving mirrors and
    windows. Fortunately, modern wind turbines incorporate the upwind rotor design so that low frequency sound is not an issue.

    Too bad the Wisconsin developers failed to use modern wind turbines. Here is How US Wind Farce handles the problem:

    Mr. Barnes: I understand that Pinnacle has entered into agreements for them (homeowners) to participate in the Project. In particular, Pinnacle has entered into an agreement with the owners of the residence where the estimated Ldn sound level is greater than 56 dBA.

    Mr Barnes concluding remarks: Sounds from Project construction will be temporary…, As a result, the overall noise impact … is not expected to be significant in the community.” (p. 16)

  3. Fran Kunz says:

    In a recent response from the PSC we were told that none of the submitted information will be forwarded to the legislature. In other words the PSC is going to bury all the evidence they can:

    “Documents submitted during the public comment period are filed in our docket and publicly available, but are not part of the packet that was sent to the legislature. The content of the information we send to the legislature is defined by law and does not include copies of the public comments we received.”

    I’m asking for all people who have first-hand experience, or have done research related to health and safety to contact legislators directly with your info to make sure they have it.
    Please keep in mind that this is in regards to proper setbacks for all health issues and safety issues.

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