New Hampshire's Virtual Town Hall
Editor's note: In light of recent reporting about the wind farm under construction in Groton, the LFDA is featuring this member's post from February about wind turbines' effect on New Hampshire's scenic landscape. The author subsequently forwarded this article from The Spectator to raise questions about the purported energy benefits of wind power. You can also read this Union Leader report.
By Claude Roessiger
At my cabin on a high ridge in the North Country, I rose some minutes before the dawn would declare itself, and went to my window, as is my habit, to absorb the grandeur of a view that sweeps out over the expanse of Mooselukmeguntic, and on across the successive ridges of the winter night, and a view that spoke of nature, not of man: for years no point of light jarred this tranquility. This was our North Country, a place where man could still be alone surrounded by lakes and mountains and tall pines. No longer! Looking out from my cabin window, I was confronted by a long line of blinking red lights, clearly delineated across the several miles of a once pretty ridge. Had we built an airport there over the summer? I did not think so, however it seemed. No, this was one more landscape desecrated by windmills.
My sense of loss for this lovely wilderness, would have been tempered had I known that these windmills give us any kind of meaningful energy. But I know better, and I am not able to follow that Quixotic notion. These windmills are no more than the products of self-congratulating environmentalists, who through their play have handed practical, if cynical, investors massive tax subsidies to erect these imposing structures, which cannot contribute either economically or meaningfully to our energy needs. The usually reported cost per kilowatt hour is roughly triple that of well-established electricity generation, and no, it won’t go down by building more of them; indeed, it’ll just make all of our power more expensive, and here in New Hampshire, it’s already far too expensive.
We corrupted the corn markets, not to mention that we turned a great deal of land to unproductive use, without any energy gain, through the subsidized Ethanol product. By the way, it also adds hidden costs to consumers, since it corrodes engines. Now, that’s widely recognized. Windmills will be the next big scam to fall, as reality sets in that by the misapplication of massive transfers of tax money we have created yet another white elephant. In the press, we read of the troubles with tax subsidized solar energy. When will we learn that if a product has to be subsidized, it by definition doesn’t make economic sense? This one doesn’t make environmental sense, either, since power stations with other energy sources must be built and operate at low efficiency levels as a back-up for when the wind dies down.
Who will take down these thousands of whirly things cluttering our once pretty land? Or will they just be abandoned to rust and crumble with the years? And, will not one of our politicians show the wit to inform himself about this useless technology and the courage to stand against it? And where were our environmentalists as our wilderness was assaulted by these damned things?
We have been misled. Denmark, which jumped on to the wind power movement most enthusiastically of all, last year declared that the energy contribution the windmills are making is dramatically below what had been forecast, in fact 60% less. That nation has stopped issuing permits for any new installations. It’s a little late now that the pastoral Danish countryside is littered with these things. But, could we not learn from others’ experience before we further damage our countryside?