"People who state that wind turbines are very quiet are probably good candidates for a lobotomy." (Wisconsin)

Jan 23, 2009



From Plataformahorta.org with appreciation

Letter from homeowner Larry Wunsch, reprinted from the Tri-County News.

January 12, 2009


It has been almost a year now since the Forward Energy wind turbines (Brownsville, Wisconsin, area) went online. I have tried to keep an open mind and change the way I have looked at wind farms, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen.

I have seen a number of homes in this wind farm go up for sale. Some of the homes are lived in by people that were born and raised here in this township, but because of the issues from the wind turbines, they said it just doesn’t feel like home anymore. The homes for sale in our township that are in the wind farm project have not or still have not been sold. In more than one case, the prospective buyers have stated that they were uncomfortable living so close to a wind turbine or just did not want to live so close to wind turbines in general. I guess so much for the submitted REPP study that states property values actually go up inside wind farms.

I always wondered why the attorney for Forward Energy told the Town of Byron Board of Appeals that if they had to provide adjacent non-hosting landowners with a property value protection agreement, that the company would not be able to get financing for the wind farm.

Invenergy told the Public Service Commission and Dodge County Board of Appeals that shadow flicker was minimal. With a modeling software they could almost eliminate this. This is BS. I get shadow flicker for six weeks in the fall and six weeks in the spring. Have someone in your home consistently turn the lights on and off and see if you can concentrate on something like reading.

People who state that wind turbines are very quiet are probably good candidates for a lobotomy. I have not slept with the windows open in my house since the turbines went online. There are days when it sounds like a jet engine idling on an airport taxi-way. There are other days when the noise is so intense, we can hear them through the walls of our home. Don’t come to me with the 50 decibel thing. I am not a sound expert, so I can(not) argue this. All I know, I was told that they don’t hardly ever hear them. Just another lie.

Ice throws—I remember this one well. Joel Link at Dodge County hearings along with Mark Jacobson stating the this type of new designed turbine does not have ice build-up on its blades, and, if it should, the turbine would shut down. I was plowing snow in my driveway on Dec. 23 when I noticed out of the corner of my eye what looked like a bed sheet diving to the ground. After the second time this happened, I figured it out. The turbine was shedding a ice/snow mix and the second one landed just short of my property line. I will tell you this, that if this event in the future should cause property or bodily harm, I will be out for blood. If you don’t believe me about the ice/snow build up, see for yourself (click here for YouTube).

Where do I go from here? I can’t complain anymore to the town chairman. He stated in an interview with Ted Perry from Channel 6 in Milwaukee that the town residents that are complaining about the wind farm’s issues are implants in the town, and not good stand-(up) people. So I am wasting my breath talking to this clown and the other two morons. I can’t complain to my state reps because they have told us that “it’s a local issue and not within their control,” but yet the state creates a law which the wind companies use to force their way into a community to erect turbines and destroy the community atmosphere. Then use a model ordinance that was drafted by (guess who) energy company officials to address concerns. I would be wasting my time talking to Invenergy people like Mick Baird, Joel Link and Mark Jacobson who basically never addressed concerns early in the project design, and have told town residents that I and others are just trouble makers.

So here I am typing this letter. I don’t know of any other way at this time to enforce what a poor decision this has been on the part of the Public Service Commission (PSC). I am shocked that the PSC didn’t place parameters in this project to protect me and other residents within the wind farm project. I don’t want to hear the “not in my back yard” (NIMBY) thing. Do any of the PSC commissioners have a wind turbine 1100 feet from their home, or does any state rep have a wind turbine 1100 feet from his/her home?  Best yet, do you know of any energy company official with a wind turbine 1100 feet from his/her home? I don’t think so.

Let’s focus on the truth; this isn’t about renewable energy, it’s about money. This is just another scam where an LLC develops something to take advantage of subsidized money to stuff millions in their pockets. I am not sure where this is all going in the future, but I know this has taken away a quality of my life. This is why residents of Wisconsin don’t trust the judgment of the PSC or their own state reps. I hope the PSC learns and (does) not bend to the pressure of lobbyists.

Larry Wunsch
Byron/Brownsville, Wisconsin

  1. Comment by Laura on 02/05/2009 at 1:32 pm

    I live in the town of Herman, where the latest batch of turbines has just started to run consistantly in the last week.

    I am ALREADY affected by the noise—I have not slept well since day one. I can hear the constant hum throughout my home.

    I was neither for nor against the turbines before, as I figured they were far enough away to not bother me. Apparently I was horribly wrong.

    I don’t know if there is anything that can be done, but if there is please count me in!

    Editor’s reply: Sorry this has happened to you! As you see from the multitude of stories on this site, you’re not alone. The wind companies deny this is happening to you, and that you cannot sleep. Or they maintain you can’t sleep because of some other problem or issue in your life. Their stonewalling is maddening in the extreme.

    What can you do, you’re wondering? Try to get the developer to buy you out. This is difficlt to do; they would rather you just shut up and disappear. A better solution is to become vociferous before your local media and state-wide, even national, media, and let people know what’s happening to you: your property and health have been taken from you. In the former case, without due process. The more people who go public with this news, and the more people are madder than hell about it, the more likely the wind companies and their pals in high public office will recognize that turbine setbacks are woefully inadequate.

    Is there a cure for your symptoms? Not that I know of, besides … moving away. A cure of sorts. The insidious thing about Wind Turbine Syndrome is that it worsens over time, that is, the pathophysiology seems to worsen, not improve. (If only because of the cumulative effects of sleep deprivation, which is a profound disorder.) As weeks and months go by, the noise/vibration effects will likely grow worse. Such has been the experience of other people, at any rate.

  2. Comment by Liv Moyer on 02/13/2009 at 1:03 pm

    I would like to say I too have noticed the sleeplessness nights–I just keep popping the Tylenol PM to sleep. We live within 3 turbines in the Cedar Ridge Wind Farm.

    We were required to purchase 35 acres to build our dream home over 10 years ago. We have recently had problems with our TV. This is unbelievable–more like a nightmare. The turbines have only been operating since November and I am already counting the days/years until they can be removed. I am positive we will see flicker this summer and will be greatly disappointed that we will no longer be able to use our 35 acres and be trapped in our home. Noise and vibration is also another concern.

    I feel like we were lied too and no one gives a S**T.

    I would also like to refer to an article that was in the Wall Street Journal January 24/25, 2009. It is in the Opinion section about the Blowhards in Nantucket. There is a proposed Cape Wind Project off the shores of Nantucket. There would be 130 towers offshore! Unfortunately, the wind farm would create “visual pollution” according to the “Nantucket” residents–Mr. Delahunt, the Kennedys and other Anticarbon Democrats.

    We live in this world of double standards and this is okay for us middle class to be subjected to the wind energy movement, but not okay for Cape residents.

    Editor’s note: Thanks for writing, Liv. “The nightmare from hell,” maybe?

    Nina’s working on her book as I am writing these very words. She’s cranking away at it. Polishing, revising. God is my witness: it’ll be out soon.

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