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Re: “Planning Commission Denies Wind Farm Project

Did i read that right? Vajdos wants to sell the turbines to Humboldt? Doesn’t surprise me. 600 foot wind turbines aren’t sustainable.TerraGen won’t give us the cradle to grave figures. Why? Because those figures would prove that it takes more fossil fuel and releases more greenhouse gases to build and maintain these than they say we would save by installing these on our pristine and undeveloped ridges.

These won’t help to reverse our climate change crisis. This is the sort of thing that got us here in the first place. This is industry on a massive scale. The minerals must be mined, factories built, trucks and machinery used, fuel burned. Then there is the maintenance, we all understand what it takes to keep a machine running. Our vehicles require constant care. Most parts can be held in our hands. These machines require massive machinery to make and move and install. Regular oil changes require hundreds of gallons of oil. Blades 225 long have to be inspected and cleaned. It’s insane. What happens to those blades when they wear out? Natalynne says they are thrown out. It’s unfortunate but all in the name of green energy. Vajdos told me July 2017 that now they chop the carbon fiber blades up in a massive chipper instead of stockpiling them. DeLapp joked about making jewelry out of the blade waste. This is no joke. These are huge machines that will eventually be junk. Once the Production Tax Credit expires the industry will die. It’s happening already in Germany. 3000 people have lost jobs in the German wind industry.

At a 350 Humboldt meeting they believe this project will make us energy independent, that it will combat climate change. In the same breath it was said that 30% of California’s energy was from renewables. Solar accounted for over twice as much as wind. Solar doesn’t require maintenance, there are no moving parts. They don’t kill or affect wildlife. Panels don’t need new infrastructure. Energy can be stored in EV vehicles and home battery systems. Mini grids can be established and people can take energy production into their own hands.

When the grid is shut down, we still won’t have power from these machines. The forest that the new transmission lines travel through will have to be maintained, roads will be made to accommodate the huge equipment, birds and bats will be killed. Lights will be blinking at night. Instead of a bucolic ridge line of grass lands and trees we will see widened roads, meteorology towers and wind turbines. Gigantic concrete footings requiring over 300 yards of concrete each will never go away. That’s over 30 concrete trucks per turbine. TerraGen says 1,600,000 gallons of diesel fuel will be burned during the installation of the turbines .

Micro grids fueled by solar, small scale wind and mini hydro systems can create the power we need. We need more PG&E blackouts. It will make people react and realize there is another way of living sustainably by using less power and creating our own. Look around, how many roofs have solar? Not enough. I challenge Humboldt to preserve our wild lands, to invest in small scale decentralized power production. I believe we can become an energy island but not by destroying our precious undeveloped land by allowing wind turbines into our backyard. We have to do it, we can’t stand back and watch Energy Capital Partners take over. It’s time.

Posted by mattolecraftsman on 12/02/2019 at 9:26 AM

Re: “Deadline Looms for Comments on Controversial Wind Power Project

It is sad to see people think that industrializing Humboldt Counties rural landscape is the answer to our climate changing catastrophe. By installing 600 foot wind turbine generators we will only be adding fuel to the fire. This project does not reduce our use of fossil fuels. It will kill several federally protected avian species. Even the DEIR states that the wind industry will eliminate 90% of the Hoary bat population and might even bring them to extinction.

Terra-Gens estimate of killing 20 Marbled Murrelets (an endangered species) is now reduces to only 10 in the next 30 years. Who believes that? The 500 foot diameter of these blades might seem to be spinning slowly but at the tip of the blades they are spinning at speed between 200-300 mph. I dont believe 60 of these spinning giants will only kill 10-20 Murrelets in 30 years. Terra-Gen will shift their figures to get this project approved and installed before the Production Tax Credit for wind expires. What about the raptors, the bats, the wildlife? Do we really know what the effect are on living species when exposed to low frequency noise?

Already I have seen Terra-Gen change the life expectancy of a turbine from 15 years (July 2018 presentation) to 25 years (Petrolia presentation) to 30 years (Ferndale presentation) Many of the concerns asked by local citizens cannot be answered, people are told to look for the answer in the DEIR or contact someone else. Natalynne seems to have good intentions but her views are skewed by a fat paycheck.

These massive structures have never been installed in a seismic active area with a rich ecological substrate. Imagine these monsters spinning while the ground is shaking. It doesnt matter how big the footing will be, they wont hold up, especially for 30 years. What happens to these 225 foot long blades when they are decommissioned? Terra-Gen says they get thrown out. Natalynne herself admitted that its too bad but thats the kind of world we live in now. Does it have to be that way? Is creating massive machines with such a short lifespan that arent reliable and cant function without constant monitoring and maintenance really the way to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels?

In the DEIR it is estimated that over 1,600,00 gallons of diesel fuel will be used during construction. They wont tell us how much fuel or the amount of CO2 is produced in manufacturing these turbines. That would be the cradle to grave information that Terra-Gen is not responsible to share with the public. Why is this not a bigger issue? We now care more about where our food comes from, from the cradle to the grave. We should know how much CO2, fuel and energy is consumed in manufacturing these as well as the construction impacts.

Many areas in Humboldt County have been off the grid for 30+ years. Our county has pioneered renewable energy production on a small scale. We have several inventors that have revolutionized how to live off the grid. The answer to our energy needs is not on an industrial scale owned and operated by a private company who is controlled by Energy Capital Partners that maintains a diversified portfolio of energy companies including domestic oil, gas, solar, geo-thermal, and wind.

We as individuals can make the difference and by shifting to a decentralized electrical system and starting up power co-ops, Humboldt County can be the model for the rest of the state, the country, even the world. It is possible to be energy self-sufficient and create electricity in a sustainable way. By conserving and being creative we can set the example. Its time to stand up and preserve this area and all other wild lands.

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Posted by mattolecraftsman on 06/02/2019 at 9:44 AM

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