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Letter: Opposing wind energy is not a sensible stance

Opposing wind energy is not a sensible stance

Wind, along with solar, is the most nonpolluting, nontoxic way to generate electricity. Coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy all create toxic wastes that are nearly impossible to completely keep away from people, pets and wildlife. Health effects include cancers, birth defects and respiratory and neurological damage.

Fossil fuels also add heat-trapping gases to our atmosphere, raising the Earth’s overall temperature and ushering in a new era of extreme, unpredictable weather, tropical diseases and instability.

Yet, depressingly, there’s organized opposition to wind. Opponents may say they support solar, just not wind. Unless society drastically reduces demand for power, solar alone will not do it.

Opponents to wind may say they are concerned about birds. Wind projects are put through scrutiny to make sure they minimize possible harm to migrating birds. All of the actual, major environmental groups (as opposed to industry front groups), like Sierra Club, EDF, NRDC, Union of Concerned Scientists and even the Audubon Society, which is dedicated to protecting birds, support wind energy. They have concluded that birds, along with humans, are in far more danger from global warming-related climate change, breathing contaminated air and drinking contaminated water, than they are from being hit by a windmill.

Mainly, opponents don’t like how wind turbines look. That’s subjective. One could apply that argument to anything. Are “looks” really a good reason to obstruct one of the most nonpolluting ways to create power?

Matt Clabeaux

Amherst