Swanton Wind turbine’s impact requires serious consideration

Saint Albans Messenger

Letter to the Editor  August 5, 2015

This is in response to Paul Martin’s letter to the editor.

You are right that no agent can advise at this point the effect of property values but seem to have left out one major point, no real estate agent in this area can.

I have found numerous articles in other papers in regards to loss in property values of houses near turbines.

One wind turbine company bought out four homes near turbines and lost over half a million dollars when selling the homes. They also made the buyers sign an agreement that living near the turbines could affect their health and that the turbine company wasn’t responsible. Many of the people who do get bought out also have to sign a gag order meaning they can’t talk out about the turbines or risk legal action.

I like your information on home and property sales on Georgia Mountain road. How far are the properties/ homes from the turbines? I know for a fact that some of the closest properties to the Georgia turbines have had their property values drop due to the noise of said turbines, the highest depreciation being 15%. The houses on Rocky Ridge will be almost three times closer than the closest on Georgia Mountain. I have also found an article of a woman who had to sell her home for half its value in part of its proximity to turbines and the fact that no one wanted to buy it. It ended up being sold to an individual who just wanted to grow medical marijuana.

You are also right about Vermont being one of the worst states to do business and having a problem keeping its younger demographic, however Vermont is a pretty forward thinking state. We already receive more than 30% of our energy from renewable resources. Burlington is the first city in the country to be powered 100% by renewable energy. We were the first to introduce civil unions and the first state to legalize gay marriage with a statute, meaning the marriage doesn’t have to be approved by a court decision. I believe the reason that Vermont is one of the worst states to do business has more to do with taxes. We are ranked third worst in the nation for taxes based on percentage of income. Vermont is not a tax friendly state and as I understand we are set to be worst the worst taxed state before long. Most businesses would rather conduct their business in a tax friendly state. No competitive, high paying jobs means the younger, educated demographic moves elsewhere to find jobs.

The initial construction phase of installing the turbines will create jobs, people will be needed to clear the land, blast for the turbine bases and building of the road, landscape and install the turbines. Once the wind turbines our up and running, how many jobs will be created? I’ve found that only one person is needed to run a facility of the proposed size. In fact it’s been found only one person is needed to maintain up to 21 turbines.

As far as the comment that there is very little credible evidence suggesting that turbines effect the health of people nearby, you couldn’t be more wrong. I have in my current possession more than 40 peer reviewed scientific papers/ articles stating the opposite. I’m sure I can find more easily but am in the process of reviewing all the information I already have. Does anyone know that most scientific papers in favor of wind turbines are paid for, or are conducted by people who work for wind turbine companies or their umbrella companies? I’ll leave you with an ethics question. Is it right to put an additive into our water supply that will benefit 90% of the population but make the other 10% ill? Now insert wind turbines into that question.

Tyrell Boudreau, Swanton

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