wind turbines

SERIES ON WIND TURBINE NOISE AND INFRASOUND ISSUES PUBLISHED BY INTERNATIONAL GROUP SHOW PROBLEMS 25 MILES FROM WINDFARMS

By Miriam Raftery

November 22, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – European Platform Against Windfarms (EPAW) has published the first two in a three-part series on infrasound and low frequency noise problems reportedly caused by windfarms.


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BOULEVARD RESIDENTS AND MANZANITA TRIBAL MEMBERS SPEAK OUT ON WIND TURBINE HEALTH CONCERNS

By Miriam Raftery

November 12, 2012 (Boulevard)—At the latest Boulevard Planning Group meeting, community members including Native Americans shared heart-wrenching stories of how the nation's quest for renewable energy is upending their lives, dividing their communities,imperiling their health, and threatening their futures.

As in Ocotillo, where a wind project has anguished tribal members and residents with destruction of cultural and environmental resources, the community of Boulevard now faces an onslaught of massive "green" energy projects on public, tribal and private lands. 


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PHOTO OF THE WEEK: DESERT PANORAMA

November 11, 2012 (Ocotillo) – Tom Lemon sent in this photograph of pristine desert before the construction of the wind project in Ocotillo. 


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ECM EARNS 11 AWARDS AT SAN DIEGO PRESS CLUB CEREMONY

8 of 11 awards recognize ECM's in-depth coverage of energy issues in our region

By Miriam Raftery

October 23, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – Continuing our proud tradition, East County Magazine was once again among the top recipients of honors at tonight’s San Diego Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards.  All entries were in the Daily Newspapers and Websites category, going up against the major print newspapers and online news sites in our region.

The majority of the honors recognized ECM's in-depth coverage of the impacts of major energy projects, including industrial wind turbines, on local rural, mountain and desert communities. ECM editor Miriam Raftery won nine awards, including a first place award in general news for Silence of the Lambs: U.S. Government authorizes killing of endangered bighorns in path of wind project.   Raftery and ECM intern Mia Myklebust shared an additional first place award in the public service/consumer advocacy category for Jacumba: A town surrounded. That story focused on the impacts of major energy projects on a small rural community.

Scroll down to see our full list of winners and read the winning entries.


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ECM EDITOR MIRIAM RAFTERY TO SPEAK ON WIND ENERGY ISSUES IN OUR REGION OCT. 18

October 17, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – Nearly 50 industrial-scale renewable energy projects are planned in San Diego’s East County and neighboring Imperial County.  San Diego Supervisors will vote Dec. 5 on a wind ordinance that could open vast tracts of scenic areas and rural communities to skyscraper-sized wind turbines to harness renewable power. There are costs, however, to ther environment and risks to health and safety of residents, including heightened fire danger.

On Thursday, Oct. 18, ECM editor Miriam Raftery will be the guest speaker at the East County Democratic Club, making a presentation on impacts these big energy projects pose for on our region.  The meeting is open to the public and will be held at the Coco’s Restaurant, 1025 Fletcher Parkway in El Cajon. Program starts at 7 p.m., if you wish to purchase dinner, arrive at 6 p.m. 

If you would like a presentation on wind energy issues to your organization, contact editor@eastcountymagazine.org to arrange for a speaker or a Powerpoint presentation that you may use.


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PROTESTERS HOLD FUNERAL TO MOURN ‘DEATH OF DESERT’ IN OCOTILLO, NOTE IRONY OF PUBLIC LANDS DAY

By Miriam Raftery

October 1, 2012 (Ocotillo) – “This project is completely wrong and it’s unethical,” said Anita Nicklen, one of dozens protesting on National Public Lands Day to draw attention to the destruction of public land in Ocotillo. “It’s our land and they’re building on public land. The desert is crying and weeping and bleeding.”


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NEW WEBSITE DOCUMENTS WIND TURBINE FIRES

September 9, 2012 (San Diego) – A new website, www.turbinesonfire.org, has been launched to raise public awareness about the dangers posed by wind turbines that explode into flames or are struck by lightning.

According to co-founder  Sherri Langue with the North American Platform Against Wind, the site “acts as a red flag…to alert folks about this already looming and horrific, unregulated problem. Imagine the impact with thousands more turbines in North America.”


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ECM WORLD WATCH: GLOBAL AND NATIONAL NEWS

August 30, 2012 --  (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:   
 
NATIONAL
 
        GENERAL NEWS:  
  • U.S. economy expands more than anticipated  (BBC)
  • Isaac reduces to tropical storm, lashes Louisiana (USA Today)
  • Do wind turbines cause forest fires? (Bangor Daily News)
  • Army issues multi-billion dollar solicitation for large scale renewable and alternative energy production for federal installations (Foley) 
        POLITICS: 
  • Republicans highlight Romney nomination, but poll shows low popularity (ABC News) 
  • Romney: I’d cut PBS, Obamacare, arts subsidies (CBS News)
  • McCain: America “can’t afford” another Obama WH (CBS News) 
  • President Obama answers questions on Reddit-AMA; read his full answers (CBS News) 
  • publicans hate Obama’s defense cuts. The trouble is, they voted for them (Washington Post wonk bl
  • Vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan on abortion: Rape is just another “method of conception”(RawStory)
  • Paul Ryan’s speech in 3 words (FoxNews.com) 
WORLD 
  • Al Qaeda followers call for death of Seal who wrote Osama bin Ladin capture book (Washington Post) 
  • Venezuela investigates alleged massacre in Amazon village (Reuters) 
  • Romney: Nuclear Iran “unacceptable” (CBS) 
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.

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EAST COUNTY ROUNDUP: TOP LOCAL AND STATE NEWS

August 30, 2012 --  (San Diego’s East County)--East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County and San Diego’s inland regions, published in other media. This week’s top “Roundup” headlines include: 

LOCAL/REGIONAL 
  • Southern California town declares emergency over quake swarm (Reuters) 
  • Sale of  Padres becomes official (10 News)
  • U.S.-Mexico border: efforts to build a virtual wall (BBC)
  • New poll shows DeMaio trailing Filner in mayoral race (10 News)
  • San Diego’s morphing water policy (San Diego Free Press)
  • Charges against same-sex marriage activists dismissed (10 News)
  • No fines for unpermitted UT car museum (Voice of San Diego)
STATE  
  • 19 wind turbines burned, 9 damaged in Jawbone fire (California Wildfires Today) 
  • Reactions pour in to public pension reform (Sacramento Bee 
  • Are you eating genetically modified foods laced with pesticides? (San Diego Free Press)
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.

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WIND TURBINES ARRIVE IN OCOTILLO AS RESIDENTS COMPLAIN OF “DUST BOWL” , THIRD WORLD CONDITIONS AT PATTERN ENERGY'S OCOTILLO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Story by Miriam Raftery; photos by Jim Pelley and Parke Ewing

"I feel like we are living in a third world country." -- Jim Pelley, Ocotillo resident and ECM photographer

August 23, 2012 (Ocotillo) – Workers have begun constructing the first of 112 industrial wind turbines near the small town of Ocotillo on federal Bureau of Land Management property adjacent to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. 

But as towering turbines eclipse mountains and desert skies, dust released from scraping desert soils bare and excavating massive turbine foundations have residents complaining that their community has been turned into a “dust bowl” while government officials turn a blind eye to conditions that pose hazards to their health.


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AERIAL PHOTOS SHOW WIND PROJECT’S TOLL ON THE DESERT

By Shaun Gonzales

August 21, 2012 (Ocotillo)--Pattern Energy has begun clearing beautiful desert near Anza-Borrego State Park for the nearly 16 square mile Ocotillo Express Wind project.  Once completed, the facility will consist of 112 wind turbines, each one standing over 400 feet tall, and requiring wide new roads carved into the fragile desert soil. 

Photographer Phillip Colla gives us a birds-eye view of the beginning phase of the destruction with a series of images available at his website.  The photos were made possible by aviation support provided by LightHawk.


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DESERT LANDS POLICY: WIND INDUSTRY GETS REALITY CHECK

Reposted with permission; original published August 14, 2012 at http://www.mojavedesertblog.com/2012/08/desert-lands-policy-wind-industr...

By Shaun Gonzales

August 20, 2012 (Mojave Desert)--If you have been listening to the past few stakeholder conferences for the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) -- an inter-agency effort to protect desert ecosystems while identifying areas suitable for renewable energy in California's deserts -- then you know that representatives from the California Wind Energy Association (CalWEA) sound disappointed as their plans to industrialize much of California's desert wildlands meet resistance.   Some of the DRECP's proposed development focus areas would only accommodate 2-17% of the nearly 2 million acres to which the wind industry initially requested access. The wind industry expressed frustration during the meetings, wondering aloud why they cannot bulldoze desert, carve hundreds of miles of new roads, and set up massive wind turbines standing over 400 feet tall across public lands.


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COUNTY SUPERVISORS TO CONSIDER MAJOR EAST COUNTY ENERGY PROJECTS AUGUST 8


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CAL FIRE: WIND TURBINE GENERATOR CAUSED WILDLAND FIRE THAT CHARRED 367 ACRES


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PHOTO OF THE WEEK: SPACE INVADERS?

 

July 25, 2012 (Ocotillo) – No, this isn’t the mother ship that’s landed in Ocotillo. It’s another alien power – the first wind turbine foundation poured at Pattern Energy’s Ocotillo Express project.  Photographer Jim Pelley measured a single turbine foundation hole measures 286 feet.


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HEALTH DEPT. REPORT ON WIND TURBINES DRAWS CRITICISM; COUNTY PLANNERS TO VOTE ON WIND ENERGY ORDINANCE JULY 20

By Miriam Raftery

July 19, 2012 (San Diego) – Tomorrow at 9 a.m.,  San Diego County's Planning Commission will decide whether to approve a wind ordinance that would enable construction of numerous wind energy projects in our region's mountains, rural and desert communities.

Why, then, did San Diego County’s Health and Human Services Agency just issue a public health position statement that amounts to a whitewash of serious health problems linked to wind turbines around the world?


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EIGHT TRIBAL NATIONS MOURN LOSSES AT OCOTILLO WIND SITE

 

 
By Miriam Raftery
 
June 24, 2012 -- A sliver of moon and a spangle of stars shone down on the Ocotillo desert last night, where representatives from eight tribal nations joined in ceremonies to honor their ancestors.  Hundreds of people from across the southwestern U.S. came to mourn the desecration of Native American sacred lands, cremation sites and the natural environment that is now occurring on public land. 
 
As twilight melted into darkness across the shifting sands and jagged ridgelines, the night’s silence was broken only by the whistling of the wind and the cadence of ancient Native American songs unchanged for the past 10,000 years. But that way of life—and the peaceful presence of this place--may soon be gone forever.  


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ECM EDITOR ON WIND WISE RADIO AT 4:30 TODAY

East County Magazine editor Miriam Raftery will be a guest on WindWise Radio.  The network, which specializes in wind energy issues, broadcasts nationally via live-stream over the Internet.

The show starts at 4 p.m. Pacific Standard Time, with Raftery slated at 4:40. She will talk about new developments with the Ocotillo Express and Tule Wind projects locally. 

Preston Arrowweed, an elder in the Quechan tribe which has filed a lawsuit seeking to halt the project, will also be a guest on the program.

Listen live at http://www.windwiseradio.org and please call in with your questions and comments at (213)943-3683! Tis is a great chance to air your concerns on wind issues nationally.

 

 


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EARTHTALK® E - THE ENVIRONMENTAL MAGAZINE

 
by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss

Dear EarthTalk: How do I learn about what pesticides may be on the food I eat?
                                                                                      -- Beatrice Olson, Cleveland, OH

June 3, 2012 -- Along with the rise in the popularity of organic food has come an increased awareness about the dangers lurking on so-called “conventionally produced” (that is, with chemical pesticides and fertilizers) foods.

 


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WIND ENERGY TAKES FLIGHT WITH ALTAEROS ENERGIES’ FLYING TURBINE

 

By Sierra Robinson

June 1, 2012 (San Diego's East County)--It has been proven that ground-based wind turbines can result in issues such as environmental damage, noise and visual blight. But Altaeros Energies has brought an intriguing alternative to the table.

Altaeros has announced a breakthrough in high altitude wind power. In April, the company reports that it tested a successful prototype of a flying wind turbine, able to lift a standard Skystream turbine 1000 feet into the air--and produce far more power with the blades aloft.


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MILITARY SEEKS TO BLOCK WIND INDUSTRY NEAR DESERT BASES

 

By Miriam Raftery

May 25, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – The military has dealt a major blow to the wind industry, announcing that it may soon oppose  wind projects in the Mojave desert due to interference with military radar tracking aircraft.


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ECM WORLD WATCH: GLOBAL AND NATIONAL NEWS

 
May 22, 2012 --  (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:   
 
 
 
 
 
 
U.S.
  • Obama spending binge never happened (Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch)
  • GOP Senators push for Medicare cuts (The Hill)
  • Wall Street rebounds, but investors dump Facebook (Reuters)
  • As NATO summit wraps, Romney and Obama trade attacks (USA Today)
  • This terrifying amendment legalizes use of propaganda on the U.S. public (Business Insider)
  • Republican-led House votes to allow military action against Iran (RawStory)
  • CEOs who delivered the most and least bang for the buck (Wall Street Journal)
  • Facebook users file class action over online tracking (RawStory)
  • Romney, Obama in dead heat, new poll finds (Washington Post)
  • Troops face same risk of brain-wasting disease as football players (KPBS)
WORLD
  • U.S. Senate approves bill to toughen Iran sanctions (BBC)
  • Italy earthquake: Monti prepares for state of emergency (BBC)
  • Suicide bomber kills 90 in Yemen (Reuters)
  • Despite end to Afghan war in 2014, U.S. to shoulder burden of funding (Fox News)
  • A look at ‘wind turbines of the deep’ (BBC)
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.

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EUROPEAN UNION’S PUSH FOR WIND ENERGY WITHOUT PUBLIC INPUT VIOLATES INTERNATIONAL LAW, UNITED NATIONS FINDS

 
May 20, 2012 (Switzerland) –As in the United States, wind energy projects have been fast-tracked through much of Europe, including sites within protected preserves. Now the United Nations Economic Commission’s compliance committee has found the European Commission in violation of international rules under the Aarhus Convention by failing to allow citizens’ adequate participation in decision-making processes regarding siting of renewable energy projects.

 


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COUNTY PLANNERS DEAL BLOW TO WIND INDUSTRY

 
By Miriam Raftery
 
May 13, 2012 (San Diego)—San Diego’s Planning Commission voted unanimously to have staff evaluate health impacts of wind turbines on people and wildlife. Commissioners balked at approving a proposed county wind ordinance or changes to the Boulevard community plan that could make it easier to gain approval of large-scale wind projects—taking the sails out of the wind industry.

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DO WIND TURBINES HARM ANIMALS?

 

By Mia Myklebust and Miriam Raftery

May 10, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – With an increasing number of industrial-scale wind turbines around the world,  numerous reports are surfacing to suggest that noise, infrasound and stray voltage (dirty energy) may be harmful to livestock and wildlife. 


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MANZANITA TRIBE AND OTHERS AT RISK FROM `DIRTY ELECTRICITY' FROM WIND TURBINES, EXPERT WARNS


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WIND SPIN: BLOWING HOLES IN INDUSTRY’S DENIAL OF HEALTH IMPACTS



By Miriam Raftery

April 22, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – For years, the tobacco industry claimed that cigarettes don’t cause cancer—long after compelling medical evidence proved otherwise.  A similar scenario is now happening with the wind industry, which has put forth various “experts” funded by the wind industry to claim that no evidence exists of negative health impacts caused by wind turbines.

Those are dubious claims that ignore mounting medical and anecdotal evidence around the world indicating that living near wind turbines can harm human health. View a video made by residents living near wind turbines in Wisconsin, discussing health problems they are experiencing which are consistent with symptoms found at many other wind sites around the world: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=71DxuicwCXw&feature=player_embedded

 


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USING RADAR TO CONTROL WIND TURBINES AND REDUCE BIRD KILLS: DOES IT WORK?



By Serena Scaglione and Miriam Raftery

April 22, 2012 (Ocotillo)-One of the major criticisms of wind energy facilities is the deadly impact of the fast-whirling blades on birds.  Most notoriously, thousands of golden eagles have been killed at the Altamont wind farm; however significant numbers of bird deaths have occurred at many other wind facilities.

Now, wind farm developers are touting radar systems similar to those used by the U.S. Air Force and NASA.  In aviation, the technology detects large flocks of incoming birds and is sold to avoid bird collisions with aircraft.  At wind facilities, avian radar in theory offers the potential reduce bird kills by shutting off turbines before birds reach the blades. 

Just how effective these systems are at wind facilities, however, remains debatable.


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PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: CITIZENS FIGHT BACK AGAINST OCOTILLO WIND PROJECT

 

May 17, 2012 (Ocotillo) –Robert Lundahl spotted these signs posted by residents and environmentalists, who are mobilizing to inform the public about negative impacts of the proposed Ocotillo Express wind energy facility.


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