The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 64
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct. 21, 1999
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    12,333

    Default Wind Power?

    I took a trip yesterday, down to the Southern Tier of New York State, with a friend. We took the back roads, both to avoid traffic and to enjoy the scenery.

    Along the way we came to an area where the hills were covered with giant wind turbines, slowly turning. I thought that they were strangely beautiful and was glad that someone had the foresight to build them there. I had known that they were there, but hadn't realized just how many of them there were.

    But then my friend, who was from the area, told me that those turbines were being turned by electricity, not generating it, and that they wouldn't work until all of the defective blades were replaced with ones that would work. They were turning just so people wouldn't question why all the turbines were standing still. These turbines have been up for at least three or four years that I am aware of, and have not worked in all that time. The company that installed them is, obviously, dragging its heels in getting the good blades manufactured and getting the the turbines running.

    Then, she told me that the farmers and land owners were duped into thinking that the electricity that would be generated would be used for the good of the community where they lived. It seems that isn't true. When, and if, these turbines ever run, all the electricity generated will be sent straight to New York City.

    She told me a couple of other things that had me gasping in amazement, also, but we'll leave it at this, or this post will be way too long.

    I wonder what experience others who have wind farms near them have had. Are your experiences as horrible as this, or are you glad, and grateful for the clean power that you are being provided with? And, I ask because there is an idea floating around that wind turbines should be built out in Lake Ontario, fairly near me, though they probably won't affect me directly. I've always thought it was a wonderful idea. Now, I'm not so sure.
    Last edited by Louise; May. 29, 2011 at 06:35 PM.
    Originally Posted by Alagirl
    We just love to shame poor people...when in reality, we are all just peasants.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2009
    Location
    College View
    Posts
    1,251

    Default Turbines across the street from my farm

    They are awful. What a horrible thing for our neighbors to do to us! FPL NextEra energy is a skeezie, horrible company. And the only reason these wind farms exist is subsides and tax breaks, and guess who is paying for that?

    Let's see, the turbines I cannot avoid looking at when outside on my property give me severe enough vertigo that I have to wear the seasickness patch (like you wear on a cruise ship) to be able to work outside most days. I am adapting a little, I tend to look down at my feet while outside, but that is just not a safe thing to do when handling horses. The turbines are very noisy, especially at night and when it is humid. It frequently sounds like you live next to an aiport where jets idle. It makes your property values tank, causes interference with your TV/dish, internet and cell phone connections, makes my dog bark at nothing. The bats that used to live in my barn have left and never come back since the turbines went online... we now have TONS more mosquitos and moths. These should just NOT be placed near homes. Ridiculous.

    And have you ever heard of shadow flicker?? Here is a link to my neighbor's blog... please play the video called shadow flicker... on the inside of the house it looks like someone running through the house turning lights on and off. It happens at night as well, when the moon is full.

    http://lifewithdekalbturbines.blogsp.../p/videos.html

    If you hear of these things coming to the neighborhood, FIGHT IT.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2004
    Location
    South Park
    Posts
    3,182

    Default

    Makes me glad we went for solar panels on our house!
    A friend told me I was delusional. I almost fell off my unicorn.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2009
    Location
    College View
    Posts
    1,251

    Default

    Oh, and now that I am warming up to the topic, wind power is not going to wean us off foreign oil, get our troops out of the Middle East, etc, etc.

    Electricity is currently produced by coal and nuclear. We have plenty of both to last us indefinitely. To wean us off oil, we need to have fuel efficient cars and awesome public transportation. THAT is where we need to focus to get us off oil. The day when we all drive electric cars just isn't gonna happen, sorry folks.

    And the subsidies are going to raise your electric bill to astronomical proportions. In IL, we had the head guy in the department that purchases the electricity for IL come and speak to us. He said that when he started, he had contracts in place where he was purchasing electricity for like 20 cents per unit. In three years, he had it down to 4 cents per unit. Pretty soon, he will be mandated to buy electricity from renewables, and the cost on those is a whopping 54 cents per unit, and he will have to buy a certain percentage of those at that price. HAVE TO. That will raise everyone's electric bill.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov. 20, 2010
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    4,288

    Default

    Ooohhh - this is a sore subject with me.

    Turbines were proposed for several forest laden hills in our area. I, along with others, thought it sounded like an interesting idea - and assumed that there were altruistic goals involved - that the power would be provided to the community - it wasn't - was only going to give relatively menial payments to a handful of local property owners, with the power going back to the grid.

    When I became serious in my knowledge of what was going on, I couldn't believe the false information that the companies had desseminated. Of course they were looking to gain huge government subsidies and incentives, and these companies became sudden experts, turning from typical turbine/electrical companies, to environmental specialists overnight. They hired out-of-town top marketing specialists to hold hands with Town members at meetings. I say companies as the plan was started by one, and picked up by another.

    One of their main stances was that the turbines wouldn't affect real property values. Many real estate buyers in this area look for pristine views. I had buyers come into my old real estate office and specifically request that no turbines be visible as they were just burned having bought vacant land near another project.

    I live in a bucolic rural, nationally historic area near Cooperstown. Some turbines were expected to be visible from the lake. As you've already observed, they're enormous - can you imagine having several right next door and not devaluing your property?!? Let alone your health and well-being? That's a whole 'nother set of chapters.

    Finally the scariest thing for me, was the fact that it was obvious there was no guarantee as to who would take care of them down the road even though they supposedly placed this in their agreements. What if the company wasn't solvent? And it sounds as if your experience confirms this. Know what it's like driving by an abandoned trailer, how about a leaning 400' wind turbine? And local governments wouldn't have had the wherewithal to pay for tearing them down - and you can imagine the state or feds wouldn't either. Our area is surrounded by spring laden hills, and when I asked how they were going to overcome the erosion created when the hills were cut into for the construction needed, they looked blank, and admitted not being aware of the nature of the springs.

    After years of volatile meetings, letter writing, legislature imploring, and bringing in attorneys, the Town finally saw the plan had major flaws and put a moratorium in place - eventually the developers lost their funding TG.

    Oh, and the one other thing they succeeded in doing was dividing the community, pitting neighbor against neighbor. I hated their carpet bagging into this town, and frankly, across the state. If you want to visit a place that looks like another planet - go to the huge turbine development above Marcy, NY. I did with a neighbor, and finally the Town fathers took a trip. It is unsettling.

    Of course now many of us are being scared by oil & gas company hydro-fracking proposals. Once again neighbor vs. neighbor. At least the legislators have their ears pricked on this issue, and I pray that the proper examinations be done. I can't imagine that they'll fall to destroying water supplies any more than is already happening in PA and the Susquehanna, but it certainly isn't over.

    All of these are HUGE issues. Scary how it is dividing rural America, and pitting our health and well being against industries' desires. It would be great if all of this exploration and ideas were truly for altruistic reasons. But there is so much greed mixed in. The only thing altruism is used for is to try to sell poorly planned, and ruinous, ill conceived development - that would never be considered without it.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    40,874

    Default

    Well, we live in part of a windfarm and don't have any of those issues others complain about, in fact, everyone is very happy with the turbines and what they have added to our area.

    First, ours is one of the most efficients in the USA, as we are in a very windy area of the country.
    Our turbines are providing in a year 1/3 of the electricity our nearest 200,000 population uses, so it is a big thing for here, that the electric company doesn't has to use 1/3 of the coal and natural gas they were using.

    In fact, they are right now building more towers, these here are doing so well, but we keep having these high winds, so they can't work as fast as they want to.

    No one of the many around here working and living around the turbines has complained of getting dizzy, that must be very rare and as for the flicker, that is a few minutes a day, as the sun raises or sets, depending where they are from you, then no more, and that doesn't bother anyone anyway.

    The whole operation was very clean, the turbines don't disturb anything or anyone, their blades are made so they vibrate just enough so bats and birds hear and feel them and we have not had not one dead bird or bat found around them and there are enviromental studies conducted around here all the time.

    I think that putting them where the population is large may cause complains, here, where there are not many people around, who cares?

    Most consider them graceful and beautiful and love to just sit there and watch them turn, say they are very calming.

    Our schools and county have benefitted from the extra taxes and community work the companies do here.

    The joke here is, if you are benefitting from the turbines in any way, yourself, your kids in school, a job with the companies, you tend to like them.
    If they happen to skip your area, then you are disappointed and not very apt to be happy about anything about them, human nature, I guess.

    I think that wind turbines, in the right places, are a viable, sensible energy source, safer and much less intrusive than many others.

    Solar power is just not very efficient yet, about half of what you can get from wind power for what you put in it, although is one more source also.
    Hopefully they will keep coming up with other technologies that will make everything more efficient yet.

    Don't dismiss windturbines, because in the right places, they are a real asset.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct. 2, 1999
    Location
    Mendocino County, CA: Turkey Vulture HQ
    Posts
    14,466

    Default

    There are several wind farms in California. I personally rather enjoy looking at them and have not found them to be disturbing even when I was on an adjacent parcel.

    It is often the case that the power may not go specifically to the local area. It doesn't really matter, though: it goes into the grid. Where the power goes first is a function of how the transmission lines exist and the like.

    They've learned a lot about wind farms over the years, and they are much better than before about not killing birds. (BTW, there is no widescale form of power generation that doesn't kill birds.)

    Obviously, an individual operator can be a horrible local citizen or an asset to a community, but this is true for most any venture.
    If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov. 18, 2010
    Location
    california
    Posts
    4,222

    Default

    Oil is used to produce electricity in the US as is coal, nuclear and natural gas. Wind turbines have improved over the years and do come with some drawbacks-as does everything. And Poltroon is right, the electricity is sold to the grid not an individual town or city.

    Wind turbines are not the single answer to the US energy needs just one of many options including: solar, bio-gas, and geothermal and other conventional energy generation power plants.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    40,874

    Default

    I am still puzzled about getting sick or dizzy from having turbines around?
    I think that must be very rare, because no one here has ever complained of getting dizzy or any other than amazed at the turbine size, they are very large close up.
    There have been people here by the busload, brought here to tour the windfarm and all that live and work here, we move cattle right around them and cattle graze around them and lay in their shadow, getting up and moving over as the sun changes the shadows.
    No visitor or local have complained of dizziness or getting sick around any turbine.

    Many here say the turbines and main highline, the lines from turbine to turbine to the main transformers are underground, are less intrusive than oil or gas wells, that require more roads, pipes and maintenance, or coal mines.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2009
    Location
    College View
    Posts
    1,251

    Default

    Bluey, what county in TX are you from? How far away from homes are the turbines in feet?

    Most people see pics of wind farms from TX and CA and think that is what they are all like... but that is definitely not true.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    May. 8, 2004
    Posts
    4,295

    Default

    Bluey, that's great but honestly, that shadow flicker video is horrible. I can't imagine how the family in that beautiful farmhouse can stand that intrusion into their senses. I can't even stand fluorescent lighting because of the hum and flicker, so to have that shadow whipping across your home and yard would be really tough to take.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    40,874

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by headsupheelsdown View Post
    Bluey, what county in TX are you from? How far away from homes are the turbines in feet?

    Most people see pics of wind farms from TX and CA and think that is what they are all like... but that is definitely not true.
    Feet? More like miles.

    That is why I say, they need to be placed where there are not many people around, because someone will always be grumpy and blame the turbines if that is what is close by.

    We will see, the new wind farm East of us will be closer to a little town, but don't know how close to houses, the turbines are not up yet, I would say maybe half a mile the closest, but that is right now a mere guess.
    Being North of the town, I expect there will not be any flicker concerns from that one.

    Our winds are a really untapped natural, renewable resource here, being the second windiest place in the USA, with wind registered every day of the year but two.
    We are a perfect place for a wind farm and the production records up to now show it.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2009
    Location
    College View
    Posts
    1,251

    Default

    Miles?! Well, that is why no one has problems with the turbines!! In DeKalb County IL the turbines are allowed to be 1400 feet (little over 1/4 mile) from the foundation of a home, and 1000 feet away from a property line. Over 200 residences are affected by the wind farm that covers almost the entire SW corner of our county. Not next to the wind farm, miles away, IN the footprint of the windfarm. Many of my neighbors have turbines on all sides, so they don't get any relief when the wind shifts, and the get shadow flicker in the morning and evening. It was all for the benfit of the wind company who wanted our easy access to the power grid, they have a lot of money to run a PR campaign with their incentives and govt subsidies, and a county board that was extravagantly and willfully and wantonly negligent with our rights as residents.


    The turbines are very very disruptive to residences. You just have to live under one like we do to realize that. We are in total agreement that they need to be placed where it is windy, out of bird and bat migration traffic and placed far from where people don't live....

    Here is another website for those that want to know more about the issue:

    http://www.windaction.org/
    Last edited by headsupheelsdown; May. 29, 2011 at 08:45 PM.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    40,874

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by headsupheelsdown View Post
    Miles?! Well, that is why no one has problems with the turbines!! In DeKalb County IL the turbines are allowed to be 1400 feet (little over 1/4 mile) from the foundation of a home, and 1000 feet away from a property line. Over 200 residences are affected by the wind farm that covers almost the entire SW corner of our county. It was all for the benfit of the wind company who wanted our easy access to the power grid.


    The turbines are very very disruptive to residences. You just have to live under one like we do to realize that. We are in total agreement that they need to be placed where it is windy, out of bird and bat migration traffic and placed where people don't live....
    Well, bats here don't migrate and we are in a wildlife migrating corridor, with hundreds of thousands of birds flying thru here and NOT ONE has been harmed, that is not a concern.
    A bird would have to be suicidal and aim to hit one, they are extremely easy to miss for them and too high up for bats, that don't fly that far up there, where the blades turn.

    Yes, it would seem poor PR to put some right over houses, even if they don't hurt anything, the idea of them there will make plenty of people mad on principle.

    There are some new turbine designs that are a helix in the middle of the tower that would be less conspicuous and so have less detractors, maybe.

    There are also individuals in subdivisions erecting smaller turbines for their home use and that is starting to be regulated also, some neighbors don't like the 40' towers in the neighborhood.
    Complicated world we live in, is it.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2009
    Location
    College View
    Posts
    1,251

    Default

    You quoted me while I was editing my post!! We musta been typing at the same time!!



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov. 18, 2010
    Location
    california
    Posts
    4,222

    Default

    I live in California and it is very regulated but for home owners, they do need to be protected from industrial developments. I also write the environemntal reports for energy projects-as well as other projects-and the impacts from oil and coal are really shocking. Nuclear is scary in that there is so much toxic waste and it needs to go somewhere.

    I really think some states need to protect their communities more from industrial development, maybe not to the degree as California but wind turbines need to be located away from residential communities.



  17. #17
    Louise is offline Schoolmaster Premium Member
    Original Poster
    Join Date
    Oct. 21, 1999
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    12,333

    Default

    This is a very interesting discussion and it is enlightening to see both pros and cons presented. I can certainly see that I am going to have to study very carefully, to see whether these windfarms are going to be detrimental to the area where they may be going or not.

    What else should I know?
    Originally Posted by Alagirl
    We just love to shame poor people...when in reality, we are all just peasants.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug. 30, 2007
    Location
    Illinois, USA
    Posts
    8,209

    Default

    I don't live near a windfarm, but the barn I board my mare at is smack dab in the middle of one of the biggest windfarms east of the Mississippi. And yes, the turbines are VERY close, I don't know how many feet, but definitely less than a mile.

    They don't make any sound. The shadows they create are only when the light is hitting them just right, and really I don't even notice it now. No I don't live there, but I'm at the barn 6 days a week, and I've spent the entire day at the barn before, and have never felt disturbed by them. The BO, who DOES live on the property, has no issues with them, either.

    For each turbine built, the property owner gets (x) amount of dollars per year just for letting it be on their land. Haven't seen any dead birds/bats. They do maintenance on them constantly, so no broken turbines left to sit. And it provides electricity to a considerable percentage of town.

    I've trail ridden in the shadows of the turbines more times than I can count. My mare had never seen a turbine before in her life before moving here, and didn't even notice them upon moving there. I truly don't understand all the gripes against them, perhaps different companies or different turbines (ours are Vestas) are not as good?
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    40,874

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Louise View Post
    This is a very interesting discussion and it is enlightening to see both pros and cons presented. I can certainly see that I am going to have to study very carefully, to see whether these windfarms are going to be detrimental to the area where they may be going or not.

    What else should I know?
    If a development affects you directly, get a good, very good, attorney, specialized in contracts, real estate contracts, preferably one that has handled wind energy leases and pick his brain, money very well spent.

    If not, if it is just some talk in your area, I expect it may be out of your hands what others do with their land.

    All energy is very regulated, it took them years of enviromental studies of different kinds and test towers before they decided if to build here or not.
    They were and still are under continuous review and inspection by different government entities.
    The company here keeps everything extremely clean and well run, no one can say they are careless in any way, or that those turbines hurt anything where they are, while they are producing clean energy, unlike other methods we use.

    Now, if someone doesn't like to look at them sticking out there, well, there is no accounting for taste.
    I guess for some, it may matter that the horizon is changed by those towers:

    http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a2...g?t=1306720811



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct. 2, 1999
    Location
    Mendocino County, CA: Turkey Vulture HQ
    Posts
    14,466

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by chai View Post
    Bluey, that's great but honestly, that shadow flicker video is horrible. I can't imagine how the family in that beautiful farmhouse can stand that intrusion into their senses. I can't even stand fluorescent lighting because of the hum and flicker, so to have that shadow whipping across your home and yard would be really tough to take.
    I have never seen a utility company place a turbine close enough to a house to cast a shadow across it. Perhaps they do that in other places: not here. And it's not necessary.

    Now, individual homeowners will place wind turbines that close, and many people lovingly do so and quite enjoy their wind power. Check out Home Power magazine for all kinds of great informative articles on the topic.

    Photo: Modern turbines with an old-style well windmill in Rio Vista, CA
    If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket



Similar Threads

  1. Wind Puffs
    By Maya01 in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: Nov. 17, 2011, 11:11 PM
  2. Headshaking and Wind???
    By SweetieG in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: Aug. 19, 2009, 07:56 AM
  3. Wind Puffs
    By Tesspony6 in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: Jul. 27, 2009, 12:03 PM
  4. Wind and Riding
    By imissvixen in forum Off Course
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: Feb. 24, 2009, 07:29 AM
  5. whips and wind
    By MySparrow in forum Driving
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: Dec. 10, 2007, 03:57 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •