Regrettably, the Sierra Club, in its Another Voice column, has issued egregious errors of fact.
The U.S. does not garner 30 percent of its power from industrial wind. The real number is around 4 percent (some say 8 percent and others, 6.3 percent) and this is often disputed as well, as these heavy fossil fuel constructed and maintained machines also draw conventional power when the wind does not blow, to stabilize, heat and cool.
Facts are also: bird and bat kills are voluntarily reported by the industry, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service massively under reports as well. (Actual U.S. numbers are between 13 and 31 million per year.) No other industry has such lax permissions for environmental killing. Developers do not search for areas with fewer nests. They hire technicians even to bury dead and dying birds, and not report.
Not clean, not safe, not free by any stretch of the imagination. Each machine contains up to 400 gallons of oil and lubricants, which leak and have to be replenished.
In recounting the Oct. 2 information meeting, Sierra Club writes that the developers prepared a list of “no harms: from sound from wind turbines, which is like the hum of an air conditioner,” and that rigorous approvals are being followed. All of these are from the wind developer’s playbook and are not factual.
Addressing the issue of harm to humans, ample evidence exists about the cocktail of noise events and ILFN (Infra and Low Frequency Noise) impacts; people have had to vacate homes, have had cardiac events, and that the unique sound impacts of all kinds are devastating to humans, wildlife, husbanded animals and pets.
It is now known that climate will never be positively impacted by industrial wind proliferation, and indeed, turbines may add pressures to those changes, whether warming or cooling.
Additionally, the underlying assumption that CO2 levels can be reduced with massive wind turbine proliferation (another claim of the industry) is also false.
Sherri Lange, CEO
North American Platform
Against Wind Power