America’s big ‘green’ wrecking machines

Politically connected industrial wind zealots are destroying rural America and electricity markets

“If you have no conscience, no morals, no aesthetic sensibility, no understanding of free markets; if you hate wildlife, people and the natural landscape; if you loathe private property… then the … wind industry is undoubtedly the place for you…. Only the Taliban at Bamiyan or ISIS at Palmyra can really come close to matching the wind industry’s scorched-earth zeal…” ~ James Delingpole

birddeadThe destruction of rural America is ongoing, thanks to those who continue to push industrial wind energy as a fantasy-cure for the alleged problem of “Climate Change.”

$Trillions have been spent on ‘renewables’ worldwide, yet carbon dioxide has not been significantly reduced, while rural America is paying the ultimate price. Our countrysides, wildlife, and Constitutional private property rights are being sacrificed on the altar of “Green” energy … for no net benefit.

U.S. taxpayers and ratepayers need to awaken to the environmentally destructive wealth transfer and corporate land grab that is industrial wind energy, before more of our priceless American countrysides and wildlife are destroyed.

Ironically, many states are outlawing certain pesticides to “protect bees, birds, butterflies and other pollinators,” while continuing to use Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) to mandate industrial wind sprawl, which slaughters pollinators, eagles, and countless other birds and bats.

Elected officials – Democrat and Republican alike – who are onboard with President’s Obama’s ‘Green’ assault in the name of halting deadbird2“climate change” – are complicit in destroying the rural fabric, environment, and wildlife that is the grandeur of America, including the slaughter of our nation’s bald and golden eagles. This assault must be ended, and those who promote it removed from office.

WHY should American taxpayers continue to fund dysfunctional wind energy, when even USEPA air chief Janet McCabe admits that the EPA’s analysis shows “wind power can expand throughout the Clean Power Plan compliance period, from 2022 to 2030, even if the tax credit is not renewed”? As long as taxpayer-funded wind welfare (the Wind Production Tax Credit, or PTC) exists, states without RPS policies are subsidizing the market-distorting, environmentally destructive energy choices imposed by the politically powerful, while those with RPS policies are shielded from the true costs of wind energy.

Having fought industrial wind development for years in my community, I have come to understand that only a grassroots rebellion, led by rural environmentalists against the wealthy, powerful, special-interest, urban fake-environmentalists will be able to turn the tide.

A brochure recently distributed by APEX ‘Clean’ Energy in western New York State, along the shores of Lake Ontario, is typical of deceitful windy disinformation campaigns seen across the United States. Much like APEX’s website – which pictures APEX’s staff in an idyllic countryside setting with NO industrial wind turbines in sight – the front cover of APEX’s brochure pictures a farm without a single industrial wind turbine in sight! It is absurdly titled: “Wind Energy: Good for Property Values.”

How stupid does APEX think people are? Any honest real estate agent will tell you the most important consideration when buying a property is: “Location, Location, Location!

Even worse is the shameless Wyoming County (New York) supervisors who are quoted in APEX’s brochure: Eagle’s Joe Kushner and Sheldon’s John Knab, both of whom will not seek re-election this year. At least one is reportedly leaving the area.

lowerpropertyvaluewindBoth Kushner and Knab pimped their towns out to Big Wind for a few recycled taxpayer dollars, making themselves some of the wind industry’s favorite go-to-guys. Sheldon Supervisor John Knab has traveled as far as the state of Alabama (that we know of), speaking on behalf of the wind industry. The two seem despicably intent on turning more countrysides into bird-slaughtering, industrial wind factories, by aiding and abetting Big Wind hucksters like APEX and their blowhard-disinformation campaigns.

The civil discord and environmental destruction that Knab and Kushner orchestrated here in Wyoming County, NY, is reminiscent of Native Americans who sold Manhattan for a bunch of beads, their naiveté taken advantage of by those who could not care less about them.

APEX’s brochure also disingenuously lists two Orangeville, NY properties as selling above assessed value, while failing to mention that both properties had significant acreage. That’s an important consideration, since Wyoming County farmland has been selling for $6,000 – $12,000 per acre since the Batavia yogurt factory was built.

For obvious reasons, APEX did NOT mention the fact that at least ten Orangeville properties have sold below their assessed value since Invenergy’s wind factory went up, and many others haven’t sold at all.

APEX’s brochure also neglected to mention the ongoing lawsuit in Orangeville, and our skyrocketing Wyoming County tax rate, which has risen yearly for the past 12 years (another 9.68% this year), in direct correlation with the installation of wind factories here. It is likewise no surprise that APEX didn’t include this report – which shows a 56% decrease in property values near APEX’s Illinois project.

It’s the same story everywhere. Sprawling industrial wind factories negatively impact property values!

More wind also means “skyrocketing” electricity rates – just as President Obama promised, and as is happening in New York and other turbine size“Green” energy states.

According to NYSERDA, the average New York State (NYS) residential electricity rate in 1999 was 13.3 cents per kilowatt hour. The first NYS wind factories went up in 2000 (Wethersfield & Madison). Twenty wind factories later, the average residential electricity rate in NYS as of February 2015 is 19.8 cents per kWh (according to the EIA, as cited by NYSERDA). That is one of the highest rates in the nation, and nearly a 50% increase since New York State began mindlessly plastering countrysides with industrial wind factories. Only 2% of NYS’s electricity comes from coal, and we have an endless supply of hydro.

The truth is, wind energy’s actual performance shows it is a LEMON by any measure. Indeed, New York State’s wind factories have been averaging a pathetic 24% of rated capacity. Any other piece of equipment – be it a machine, person or animal – that operated only 24% of the time would have been put out to pasture long ago! Who among you would buy a vehicle that only operated 24% of the time? You wouldn’t. You couldn’t afford to. It’s just that simple.

But when the state and federal government are in charge of spending our money, economic reality doesn’t seem to matter. It’s not their money, and they are never held personally accountable.

Physicist and Malone, NY, town board member Jack Sullivan recently explained the reality of wind power’s abysmal energy output in his article, “Some lessons from New York.” Both Vesta and GE turbines have a manufacturer’s life expectancy rating of only 20 years, he notes – and yet “no New York wind project is on track to sell enough electricity in 20 years to pay for itself.” [emphasis added]

Even worse, Sullivan’s calculations are based on the wind industry’s self-serving claim that turbines have a 20-year life expectancy. The added inconvenient reality, however, is that “wind turbines last only half as long” as the industry claims – making their cost-benefit claims even more fraudulent.

These facilities are not “wind farms.” They’re tax farms. They are in the business of harvesting our hard-earned taxpayer and ratepayer dollars – and transferring them into the pockets of rich, multi-national corporations that then give big dollars to the politicians who keep this scam rolling merrily along.

All of this is enabled by obscene cronyism in high places and by the short-sightedness, willful ignorance and rampant greed of those who are willing to suck on the teat of wind welfare at the rest of our expense.

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About the Author: Mary Kay Barton

Mary Kay Barton is a retired health educator, a small business owner in New York State, and a tireless advocate for scientifically sound, affordable, and reliable electricity for ALL Americans. She has served over the past decade in local Water Quality organizations and enjoys gardening and birding in her National Wildlife Federation “Backyard Wildlife Habitat.”

  • Alan Meyer

    i love “Cherry Pickers”. #1. “WHY should American taxpayers continue to fund dysfunctional wind energy,” – Why should American taxpayers continue to fund the oil and gas industry by a factor 10 X’s that of wind energy? #2. Industrial wind sprawl, which slaughters pollinators, eagles, and countless other birds and bats. – interesting argument however high-rise buildings in our cities kill more by a factor of 1000 X’s than wind turbines. #3. the wind industry’s self-serving claim that turbines have a 20-year life expectancy. – as compared to a nuclear reactor which also has a “Life expectancy of 20 – 25 years and then costs $50,000,000,000.00 to refurbish for another 15 – 20 (refurbished reactors have a shorter life before they have to be refurbished again or de-commissioned at which time the site has become so contaminated that it’s un-usable for up to 25,000 years because that’s the 1/2 half-life for waste / spent uranium to break down, i.e. if you have 1 lb of spent uranium after 25,000 years you have 1/2 lb. after another 25,000 yrs you have 1/4 lb. They don’t tell you that when they’re trying to build new ones.) #4. What’s the difference between building wind turbines on expropriated property and doing the same thing for a new oil / gas pipeline, oh yes the wind turbine doesn’t create an environmental disaster that destroys the surround properties, wild life and ground water that takes generations to become usable again. #5. Talking about subsides I think you’ll find that the oil and gas industries subsidies are about 100 X’s that for wind turbines. Yes there are issues with green energy technologies however when compared to other options… weigh them up and see on balance which is the better choice. p.s. re: property values, try selling your property if you have a pipeline through it or they build a petroleum / gas pumping station within 2 or 3 miles of you. It’s called give away and good luck trying to get property insurance. Something to think about.

    • Quantummist

      First there is a difference between Subsidies and Tax Breaks … But on a Per Watt basis the Green Energy side gets 1000x more subsidies than the oils and gas side even when you include tax breaks ….

      • birdbrain2

        We have been subsidizing the gas/oil industry for what 60 years. Even though the gas/oil industry has made billions in profits and have thrown it in our faces and laughed at us. Because they know that we are a captive audience. They know that we have no choices pay it or do not drive. Now with the electric cars, propane vehicles and Compressed natural gas vehicles we have started fighting back. OPEC has pretty well got these greedy SOBs over a barrel and keeps tightening the noose. The lower the fuel prices go the greedily the oil companies get. They now come up with every excuse to raise the price of fuel. Winter gas/ summer gas/ closing the plants for cleaning is just some of there excuses. They do this every year at least three times a year. You better like it because the greedy oil companies are going to continue to do this at record pace. If oil was to get to thirty dollars then gas should be about a buck and a quarter a gallon but I guarantee you that will not happen as the oil companies do not want to refine gas for that price. They will have an excuse that is guaranteed.

        • AuldLochinvar

          The fact that fossil carbon is bad does not make wind turbines and solar panels and bird frying solar concentrators good, unless, by some miracle of modern engineering, the wind and sun that coal replaced can win back an industrial world with seven to ten times the demand for energy.
          No such miracle exists. Can wind turbines even power a merchant ship better than the sails of the Cutty Sark? How about the transatlantic liners that can outrun a Force 6 wind?
          Nuclear power can do these things, and its history is both safer and cleaner than coal, gas, or oil.

    • Apparently you are unaware Alan, that less than 1% of nationwide electricity generation comes from oil. Wind-generated electricity has nothing to do with our nation’s dependence on oil for gasoline, diesel fuel, plastics, etc.

      You are also apparently unaware that it is the same big, “bad” oil, gas, coal, and nuclear corporations that own wind – ie: GE, FPL, BP, AES, Iberdrola, Siemens, etc – many of whom have NOT paid any taxes in the U.S. in years, in large part thanks to their “investments” in wind. As Berkshire Hathaway owner, Warren Buffett admitted, “We get tax credits if we build ‘wind
      farms.’ That’s the only reason to build them. They don’t make sense
      without the tax credits.”

      ENRON initiated the U.S. wind industry as a tax shelter generator. Nothing about that has changed. Today’s wind industry is ENRON on steroids.

      Furthermore, antiquated wind technology was relegated to the dustbins of history back in the 1800’s when the reliable steam engine came along. The only reason the wind industry exists is because of all the subsidies and incentives being doled out to the wind industry by cronies in high places.

      The diffuse energy of wind can NOT provide modern power – period. Wind provides virtually NO firm capacity. Thus, wind needs constant “shadow capacity” from our reliable, conventional generation sources. This redundancy is the very reason Big Wind CEO, Patrick Jenevein, candidly admitted in his WSJ op-ed, “Big Wind Subsidies? No Thanks,” and follow-up TV interview, “Consumers end up being double-payers for the same product.”

      Wind provides virtually NO firm capacity, while nuclear reactors provide well over 90%. RELIABLE firm capacity = modern power.

      The sprawling footprints of industrial wind factories, with their 400 – 600 foot-tall bird-chopping towers cause massive Habitat Fragmentation. Habitat loss is cited as one of the main causes of species decline worldwide. The blatant irony is that wind proponents are destroying the very environment they claim they wish to save.

    • AuldLochinvar

      The argument that other things kill birds and bats, and that fossil carbon is bad, falls to the ground like a Peregrine Falcon at Ivanpah Solar with its wings burnt, when you ask how effective wind turbines have been in putting coal mines and gas pipelines, and sounding for oil in the Arctic, out of business.
      But in Ontario province, refurbishing and expanding nuclear power plants allowed them to shut down most, or perhaps all, of the coal driven electric generation.
      It is quite well established that proximity to wind turbines has halved the value of many dwellings in the Republic of Ireland. I rejoice that in County Down in the North, where I lived from the age of 11 until 24, an offshore fleet of wind monsters was rejected by “red tape”.

    • Jon Alldritt

      First the Trojan nuclear power plant site in Rainier Oregon is being developed on. If there is no unplanned release and spent fuel rods and containment vessel is removed there is nothing of half life concern left.

      Second wind and solar neither produce enough power in their life span to remove as much CO2 as used to produce, transport, install and hook up to the grid all things considered.

      Lastly what part of oil so called subsidies do you want to eliminate.

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/energysource/2012/04/25/the-surprising-reason-that-oil-subsidies-persist-even-liberals-love-them/2/

      • Jon Alldritt

        Locally Graph shows wind doing its best I would call wind and solar unreliable. The pie chart shows name plate capacity not actual production with wind averaging less then 24% of stated capacity. Solar is so little they leave it off the graph and is less then 21% of name plate.

        http://transmission.bpa.gov/Business/Operations/Wind/baltwg.aspx

  • globeflyer

    George Soros just bought a huge stake in a couple of coal companies, Peabody Energy and Arch Coal. So much for his “ideals” on global warming/prevention. When in doubt, follow the money….What party do you think gets the bulk of Soros’ campaign donations?

    • Brin Jenkins

      He also funded a Charity in the Ukraine to promote EU membership! With the history of Russia, the USSR and The Ukraine, after Stalin had murdered millions it was unlikely to aid good relations with Putin methinks.

  • wierd

    ….. 24 hours in a day x 7 days in a week = 168 hours in a week. normal 40 hour work week. Giving the benefit of the doubt that you work at 100% the entire week… 40/168= .2381 x 100 = 23.8% or 24% if you round up… no wonder employers think most of their employees are lazy..

    • Totally false analogy. We all rely on electricity 100% of the time – 24/7/365.

      I don’t know any employee – or employer, who would consider working 100% of their life.

  • Robert Johnson

    Mary Kay Barton probably voted for Obama. I have been driving close by several wind farms for years. I always look for the dead birds, have yet to see one.

    • rdj120

      Try counting dead birds while walking through a wind farm rather then zipping by at 70 mph.

    • Hilarious Mr. Johnson. In case you haven’t noticed, Obama is ALL-FOR industrial wind. So much so that Obama passed 30-Year EAGLE-KILL permits specifically for his favored wind industry since industrial wind turbines disproportionately slaughter so many eagles. Thankfully, a California Judge just over-ruled Obama’s bird-slaughtering support for this giant Enronesque transfer-of-wealth scheme.

  • SavaShip

    It isn’t that wind turbines aren’t feasible, I just don’t think Horizontal Axis wind turbines (HAWT) are the way to go with those big dangerous blades. VAWT is a much more environmentally friendly idea, but they are 40% less efficient and have been thoroughly panned by many environmentalists because they are drag-based instead of lift based. The point is, HAWT will kill innocent birds, VAWT will only kill birds willing to fly into a solid looking structure, and things like the savonius design are incredibly durable, and can withstand high winds without shattering into little pieces.

    • Brin Jenkins

      The power output is designed around a wind speed of 24 MPH. at 12 MPH you don’t have a 50% reduction, its probably more than 90% less than designed output. If there is no wind we have no power at all. Now we are unable to store energy in any meaningful capacity, the Grid system in the UK loses 28% of all transmitted power so how are these generators to make meaningful contribution to our needs?

      http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk gives real time load and generation data in the UK and France.

      • AuldLochinvar

        Strictly speaking, the power of the wind is proportional to the cube of the wind speed. So at half the wind speed at which the “turbine” delivers its rated power, you get 12.5% of that power. For speeds higher than 24 mph in the above example, the blades feather so the propeller doesn’t suffer centrifugal breaking stresses. When the wind exceeds the maximum, at about gale force 8, the blades are feathered to zero, and braked.
        That of course means a sudden loss to the grid of the entire capacity of the wind “farm”. We delicately call that “instability”.
        But the turbine nacelle is not a weathercock. It now needs auxiliary power, to keep it pointing into the veering of the wind. When a hurricane is passing, that’s a 180 degree change.

      • SavaShip

        I think the issue is people tend to view wind turbines with a large scale farming mentality. If we looked at them as solutions for individuals, and people started designing their personal power requirements under the “feast or famine” style provided by wind power, it would work. Every house with a storage bank of batteries, and a few of their own wind mills. The grid would just exist as a failsafe. Power companies, and powerful lobbies would do all they can to stop that though.

    • AuldLochinvar

      It doesn’t do a thing for the fact that the wind is fickle, and its power is the cube of the windspeed.
      Most people who know the fact that our planet gets as much energy from the sun in an hour as we use industrially in a a year ignore the difficult fact that the planet has to get rid of it in an hour, or get hotter, Quite a lot of the global energy so generated is called “tropical storms”. That’s a typhoon in the Pacific, a hurricane in the Atlantic. Rocket scientists have succeeded in landing a very small spacecraft on a comet’s body. Predicting just the future track of a hurricane is a lot harder than rocket science. Making use of its immense power is almost certainly out of the question.

      • SavaShip

        I just replied with an explanation to someone else 🙂 I feel that wind turbines are often dealt with using a farming mentality, which is to say lots of huge turbines in a designated area. I think it would only work if we scrapped that idea, and wind turbines were used at the individual level, along with preparing for the “feast or famine” supply that wind power gives using personal battery banks. The power grid would be reduced to just a backup for local supplies. Lobbyists for power interests would fight hard to keep that idea from gaining traction.

  • AuldLochinvar

    The “alleged” problem of Climate Change is genuine, and worse than what Al Gore and the EPA, and any advocate of wind turbines or other weather-dependent “renewable energy” realise. The mischief done by fossil carbon companies clandestinely includes, IMCO (In My Considered Opinion), encouraging the advocacy of non-remedies, and opposition to the real one, which is civilian nuclear power.

  • Philip Gavitt

    You lost me at “alleged” climate change.