2012.08.01 Diane Molitierno: Industrial turbines not green or cheap

Written by David Green.

All of last week’s letters to the editor mentioned “windmills.” This debate is not about scenic wooden windmills out behind the barn in a field of clover. I am concerned about having a massive wind turbine in my back yard, a gigantic piece of machinery that could have a very negative impact on my family’s health and well-being.

Throughout the debates I have often heard that those of us “anti’s” (a more correct term would be people interested in stricter regulations) only spout the negative effects of the turbines. I would love to hear the positive elements, but no one in favor of the loose regulations is giving me anything, nor is my research.

I went to the informational meeting at the American Legion last month. I was told that there was a representative from the wind company, members of the Seneca Township Board, and members of the planning commission were all present. Wouldn’t that have been a great opportunity to give some benefits of the turbines, assuming there are any? That resounding silence leads me to come to the conclusion that perhaps the only benefit is financial, for the owners of large plots of land and to the windmill companies.  

With an earth science degree and a law degree, I feel like I might have a bit of a “leg up” when it comes to researching and understanding some of the aspects of this issue. Without re-hashing everything that has been said, here is a simplified version that I believe from my research of the issue:

• These turbines are not “green.”

• They are not clean.

• They are not cheap. We will not save anything on our utility bills, but likely pay more and  suffer from lower home values.

• They depend on rather than replace the need for fossil fuels.

• They pose potential health and financial risks to nearby home owners. This risk could be cured with stricter regulations. These include greater distance from homes and property lines, regulation of run time to reduce flicker, and noise level limits.

I encourage Seneca Township voters to vote NO to the proposed wind ordinance, not to prevent the presence of the turbines, but to require our township board to write a safer ordinance that protects its residents. I can’t imagine what should be more important to our board than the safety and well-being of the township residents.

– Diane Molitierno

Morenci Road, Morenci

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016