Saint Albans Messenger; May 2, 2017
Sarah Wolfe’s letter regarding the proposed regulations on sound from wind turbines makes some claims that are unsupported. “[W]ind power has clear, proven economic, environmental and health benefits” and is a “clearly proven public good.” I would enjoy seeing such proof, and I seriously doubt that she can provide it.
She also states that the proposed standard is more restrictive than it needs to be. It goes against “the clear weight of scientific evidence” – where’s the proof ? — and is “unprecedented” in the US. She then claims that the “lowest comparable standard is Maine’s nighttime limit of 42 decibels (Maine’s daytime limit is 55 decibels).” I, however, found that Maine’s (and WHO’s) standards are considerably lower: http://wiseenergy.org/Energy/Acoustical_ Limit.pdf
• 30 DBa is the no effect limit for outdoor nighttime noise: World Health Org (2009)
• 32 DBa is the night time limit in wind law of Frankfort, Maine (2011)
• 35 DBa limit (24/7) in wind law of Sumner, Maine (2013)
• 35 DBa daytime limit in wind law of Woodstock, Maine (2013) Furthermore, the proposed rule would not be a functional ban on wind but, rather, a measure to protect neighbors’ health, comfort, and enjoyment of their property. Let industrial wind be placed where Vermont citizens are not affected.
St. Albans Messenger, Letter to the Editor, May 1, 2107
By now many of you know that a group of concerned citizens have been opposing Swanton Wind for almost two years . Many of you have offered kind words. You showed your support at the polls, and some have asked how you can help.
To recap, we’re talking about the proposed 20MW Industrial Wind generation facility of seven 500 foot turbines. These would be the largest turbines in Vermont and the closest to homes in a residential neighborhood than any other wind projects to date. It will be two years in June since we learned of this project. Even though the Belisles and Bourbeaus (the developers) illegally put up a MET Tower years prior to this, neighbors were kept in the dark. Continue reading
St. Albans Messenger Letter to the Editor April 27, 2017
Sarah Wolfe, for those who haven’t followed industrial wind matters, is a paid hireling of the shadowy cabal behind industrial wind in Vermont. She works for VPIRG, a non-government organization which receives major funding from industrial wind interests. Wolfe’s apologia in behalf of her financial benefactors is full of half-truths and many outright mis-statements. I’ll be clear from the start where my interests lie. I’m a strong supporter of any renewable energy project that is done right and which strives to be a positive influence in the renewable energy movement. Industrial wind in Vermont could be such a movement, but presently it is not. Sadly, the Vermont industrial wind movement is all about nailing down lucrative monetary incentives promulgated by the federal government. The Vermont industrial wind cabal and its shill, VPIRG, care not one whit about promoting carefully thought out wind projects designed to save our environment, not destroy it, along with our precious eco-systems.
Every single one of the major industrial wind projects presently built-out in Vermont represent a seriously failed design concept—they’ve been built too close to the homes of Vermont citizens and those citizens have suffered from the offensive noise such projects produce. The continual noise from industrial wind turbines cannot be compared to road traffic or other noises we’ve become accustomed to. It is more like an airplane flying directly overhead that never lands. Instead of getting behind a new SOUND RULE which could protect Vermonters from their noise predations (and perhaps encourage developers to work with their neighbors and communities) the Vermont wind movement wants to water down the few protections built into the currently proposed SOUND RULE. Continue reading
St. Albans Messenger Letter to the Editor April 22, 2017
I read a letter to the editor about sound levels from wind turbines and different regulations about them in different states. Before a person should make comments about noise I strongly recommend that you buy a sound meter and listen to the differences between the regulations.
Also these sound waves must be tested at the home in all directions as shapes of trees, foliage, mountains, adjoining buildings and wind direction change dB’s received.
Insulation and window types also greatly affect indoor dB’s. Also different humidity levels affect dB’s received. So as you see it’s not just a simple one test tells all.
I managed a hotel in Baltimore MD years back and had a contract with a trucking company that used refrigerated trucks. I learned a good lesson about sound, sound waves, sound shapes and so on. I figured having the trucks with the refrigeration units running at night would be best placed facing one of our buildings, it would best serve the neighbors, WRONG. The noise bounced off our building and back toward the homes, at more dB’s than directly coming off the motors. Which was below allowable levels at the motors but not at the houses with the trucks facing toward my hotel. The shape of the bushes, trees and our building was causing a megaphone effect. Continue reading
Saint Albans Messenger; April 8, 2017
Former Governor Shumlin revealed during a recent speech at his alma mater, Wesleyan University, in Middletown Connecticut that: “we changed the regulations so that we could build big wind, meaning wind turbines, in the right places in Vermont”. The right places according to former Governor Shumlin turned out to be intact, carbon sequestering, ecosystems on our Green Mountains.
Another change that occurred during the Shumlin “change the regulations” era involved the necessary permits and pre-construction data that is required for the issuance of a certificate of public good (CPG) by the Public Service Board (PSB) for renewable energy projects. For example the following questions were asked of Swanton Wind through discovery: PETITIONER 1-153: Please describe with particularity how deep below present grade the following components of the project would be after construction: A) the lowest extreme limit of the turbine towers or their supporting infrastructure or armature elements; B) the concrete pads to be installed at each turbine site; and, C) any guy line anchors. RESPONSE: A. No geotechnical work has been performed to date, therefore, no foundation design work has commenced and the lowest extreme limit of the turbine towers, their supporting infrastructure, or armature elements is not known at this time.
B. The dimensions of the concrete pads to be installed at each turbine site are not known at this time.
C. The location type and size of any guy line anchors that would be needed are not known at this time.
Response provided by Swanton Wind’s engineering consultant. Continue reading