Some good reasons to prohibit industrial ridge-top windmills

Dave Erb's May 26 guest commentary ["Wind Power or Hot Air?"] laid out some good reasons to prohibit industrial ridge-top windmills that will enrich a few while forever stealing our heritage of beautiful unspoiled vistas. Here are a few more reasons:

1) The enormous sums of money needed for windmills could be better spent on conservation and efficiency; once the demand is reduced as much as possible, we won't need nearly as much power.

2) Solar is a better option for many reasons: a) it has no moving parts and won't wear out like windmills; b) solar can be decentralized on individual buildings, cars etc.; c) the centralized power grids needed by industrial windmills are vulnerable to disruption by weather, computer error, malevolent greed (think Enron's "rolling blackouts," or even terrorists; d) wind-power proponents have typically overstated the efficiency of proposed windmills (see below); and e) windmills sporadic output does not actually reduce power-plant usage or emissions.

I know this is all a little hard to swallow, but I also know the multinational windmill industry is garnering billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies and is not to be trusted. I have lived with wind power in Washington state, and I know what I'm talking about. Please, do yourself and our region a favor, and take a look at the cons before you invest our future in an unproven, unsightly resource with lots of downsides. There are many good sources; just Google them. One example is "A Problem with Windpower," by Eric Rosenbloom. I dare you to read that; it gives the statistics to back up the efficiency claims I mentioned earlier, as well as tons of problems I haven't the room to mention.

— Michael Kohnle
Asheville

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3 thoughts on “Some good reasons to prohibit industrial ridge-top windmills

  1. lance

    you know the windmill industry is not to be trusted?

    this statement makes me question your motives

  2. Johnny

    The near constant use of the word “industrial” in opposition letters about wind power is pretty amusing. Every one of them I’ve read just comes off as a NIMBY response dressed up in some new-found populism.

  3. Steve

    No one wants to try anything new. There are so many people in WNC who claim to want to make this place a green energy hub, or that it’s a “progressive place in Asheville”, but when it gets down to brass tacks everyone’s a complainer about the pretty mountain views.

    Here’s the deal. If you want to use electricity you’re going to see the country diversifying its energy production sources. We cannot keep using oil/coal/other fossil fuels without any alternatives. To knock a project like this, no matter how small it may be, is a step in the wrong direction.

    I personally think it would be really neat to see wind turbines on a mountain ridge. Do people even realize what that would say about the area? I guess not. Instead, a region plagued by lack of drive to improve its job market, industry, diversity of energy sources, and quality of life sits idly by and claims to be something it’s not. Mountain views aren’t gonna power your 5 ton air conditioner on the side of a mountain in your McMansion when we finish selling ourselves out for fossil fuels.

    Hell, there are many riverfront areas that could be used for hydroelectric production, but we have junkyards instead.

    Nice job saying one thing and doing another.

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