Something (very) rotten in Denmark

Apocolypse Denmark

“It’s a widely held conception that Denmark is one of the world’s least corrupt countries. The message is always warmly received, but this isn’t the same as saying that Denmark is free of corruption.

“I’m not qualified to speak about corruption in general, but there is one area in which I do have an in-depth knowledge: wind power – which is an industry that has managed to thoroughly corrupt the political system.”

Recently one of us was talking to someone from Infigen and that person made a really interesting comment.

“You know,” she said, “Denmark is the safeword of the wind industry.”

We couldn’t profess to be familiar with the term – so we looked it up. And when we did, we realised she was right.

Whenever the conversation gets too heated, too close to the truth, too painful, the wind industry and its political supporters cry “Denmark!”

Here’s an example.

“Some people who live near wind turbines get sick.”

“Not in Denmark. They’ve been living near wind farms for years.”

“Wind energy is not an efficient form of power production.”

“It is in Denmark.”

“We think the industry is corrupt.”

“But what about Denmark? Most honest country in the world.”

“Wind power only functions because it’s heavily subsidised by the public purse.”

“Denmark.”

“But what about baseload power?”

“Denmark.”

“But then there’s – ”

“DENMARK!”

“And-”

“DENMARK!”

“But another important factor is -”

“DENMARK! DENMARK! DENMARK!”

We’ve got a whole bunch stuff in our files about what’s really going on in Denmark so we thought we’d start putting it up online.

To kick off, Peter Rordom is a retired High Court judge in Denmark. He wrote the following editorial in The Copenhagen Post last year.

It’s a widely held conception that Denmark is one of the world’s least corrupt countries. The message is always warmly received, but this isn’t the same as saying that Denmark is free of corruption.

I’m not qualified to speak about corruption in general, but there is one area in which I do have an in-depth knowledge: wind power – which is an industry that has managed to thoroughly corrupt the political system.peter-rrdam

The law approving construction of a test centre of large land-based wind turbines near the Jutland town of Østerild was forced through parliament despite warnings about the effects it would have on the natural environment in the area and its impact on residents. The bill was able to make its way through parliament thanks to a complete manipulation of the facts – both by keeping some information under wraps, and by directly misinforming people. 

But it wasn’t parliament that was misled. Members of parliament that voted for the law were fully aware of the truth, yet they turned a blind eye so the law could be passed. It was, in fact, voters who were tricked into thinking that they had been told the whole truth. 

The only thing that matters for wind turbine makers is money. You can wonder why law makers would play along with their game, but as soon as they threatened to move jobs abroad they did as they were told. 

Laying out all the details of this situation would require more space than is available here, but for those that read Danish, Peter Skeel Hjort’s book ‘Besat af wind’ (Obsessed by the wind) provides a harrowing look into of the industry and the political system. 

Collaboration between the industry and lawmakers didn’t stop with the approval of the test centre. Since then, there has been a flood of complaints from people who were unfortunate enough to find themselves living next to large land-based wind turbines elsewhere. The effects, which are well documented, can cause illness and render properties uninhabitable. Their complaints, however, are normally rejected by the authorities, who maintain that living close to wind turbines is not associated with any detrimental effects.

On October 9, Berlingske newspaper published an article by three Aalborg University scientists, who proved that the official noise calculations are wrong, and that the manipulated figures tone down the problems associated with living near a wind turbine. The authorities have done nothing to show that they have scientific evidence to base their claims on. Their only reaction has been to say that the Aalborg University study is wrong, because it does not jibe with the wind power industry’s own findings. We heard this most recently from the environment minister, Ida Auken, who is either being led around by the nose of the people whose interests she’s looking out for, or – as was the case with her predecessor – she is taking part in the misinformation. 

It’s worth noting that the compensation homeowners living near wind turbines are given to make up for lost property value is based on the falsified noise calculations – which means that people are, in fact, being cheated out of the full amount they are actually owed. 

Corruption is defined as moral decay, and that is precisely what we are witnessing here. The fear that Denmark could lose jobs and the near religious obsession with wind power has made politicians deaf and blind to objections to wind as a source of energy, and led them to take part in the industry’s fraud. The environmental and human impacts of what they are doing appear to have no effect on them.

It only adds to the embarrassment is that instead of hiring people, the wind industry is eliminating jobs in Denmark. Meanwhile, little has happened at the Østerild test centre. Parliament rushed to approve the establishment of Østerild, because the industry told them it was vital that they could have seven large wind turbines standing in a row. Østerild was chosen because it had the physical characteristics the industry needed. Today, one turbine stands, and it remains to be seen how many more will be built. 

There are a lot of people who have plenty to be ashamed of, but we shouldn’t expect that to change much. Moral scruples aren’t what we most associate with Danish politicians.

* Thanks to Michael Skeel Fahlsten for the graphic used in this post.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.

Comments

  1. Andreas Marciniak says:

    If this is the country of NO problems with Turbines,? why is there 170 groups in Denmark fighting against Wind Turbines and the ILL effects it has on them ?

  2. Dr Sarah Laurie, CEO Waubra Foundation says:

    The Danish Society for Occupational and Environmental Medicine have expressed their concerns about the current inadequate Danish noise guidelines with particular concern about low frequency noise. In a document from October last year, the Society President had this to say:

    “A number of original papers and several reviews show that between 10% and 40% of citizens living close to wind turbines feel annoyed or extremely annoyed by the noise, and it is shown that the number of annoyed people rises sharply when the noise exceeds 35 dB [1-7]. Generally, it has not been possible to distinguish between nuisances from noise and low frequency noise respectively. Some of the studies also suggest that living near a wind turbine affect sleep quality and the most recent review concluded that “Wind turbine noise is causing noise annoyance and possible also sleep disturbance, which means that one cannot completely rule out effects on the cardiovascular system after prolonged exposure to wind turbine noise, despite moderate levels of exposure”

    This sleep disturbance has been confirmed in multiple peer reviewed published studies, (specifically Shepherd et al, Noise and Health, October 2011, and Nissenbaum et al, Noise and Health, October 2012) and is the commonest reported symptom by the residents. Sleep disturbance, if cumulative, is well known to cause serious damage to long term physical and mental health.

    Further details about the statement from the Danish Society can be accessed at the following link: https://www.wind-watch.org/documents/statement-on-the-revision-of-the-executive-order-on-noise-from-wind-turbines/

  3. This is an interesting documentary to put under the nose of those who think that there are no problems with wind turbines in Denmark: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JiCQabGuKFk

Trackbacks

  1. […] Yeh, OK – you got us – STT calls it corruption. […]

  2. […] last year. We reproduce it here in full. (And don’t forget to read our earlier post – Something (very) rotten in Denmark – if you missed […]

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