Communities Fight Back & Set the Wind Industry on Fire

End wind farms

Scots leave no room for doubt about what they’re thinking during a 2006 protest in Midlothian. And Scots’ attitudes have stiffened since then.

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Remember all those glowing stories about wind power outfits being welcomed into rural communities with open arms? You know, tales about how farmers are dying to have turbines lined up all over their properties? How locals can’t wait to pick up some of the thousands of permanent, high paying jobs on offer? How developers are viewed with the kind of reverence reserved for Royalty?

No?

We’ve forgotten them too.

The wind industry routinely trots out 4 or 5 year old community surveys (where the respondents don’t and will never live within commuting distance from these things) that purport to show the ‘love’. But, when the question is put fair and square to people that know they’ll end up as wind industry “road-kill”, the results tend to come out a little differently:

1,000 Sign Petition Against Mt Emerald Wind Farm: Survey says 92% Opposed

After years of being lied to, bullied, berated and treated like fools (at best) and “road-kill” (at worst), for most, the ‘gloss’ comprising wind industry PR efforts to ‘win hearts and minds’ has well and truly worn off.

These days, the communities aren’t so gullible; they aren’t so welcoming; and they aren’t willing to take it lying down. Despite having the skills of the best spin doctors in the business at its disposal, it’s “outrage” that’s become the word synonymous with the wind industry, wherever it goes. In short, rural communities have had enough – and they’re fighting back, by fair means and foul:

Angry Wind Farm Victims Pull the Trigger: Turbines Shot-Up in Montana and Victoria

And, the PR outfits that are paid a packet to ‘shape the debate’ – like the Clean Energy Council and the Australian Wind Alliance – and their equivalents around the Globe  – are more or less just ‘stealing’ from their wind industry clients.

Here’s a couple of tales from Ireland and the UK, on how the wind industry has completely lost its grip on the PR ‘game’.

Protesters burn leaflets at wind farm meeting
The Sunday Times
Justine McCarthy
26 July 2015

THE project manager of a proposed wind farm in the midlands wants planning authorities to drop their requirement for public information events, after the company’s literature was burnt by protesters.

Galetech Energy Developments was hosting an information evening at a community hall in Spink village, Co Laois, on Monday night when wind farm protesters removed promotional leaflets, maps and montages, setting them alight in a barrel outside. The hall is in the grounds of Spink national school.

The wind farm’s promoters cancelled a second information evening scheduled for Tuesday night because they feared the protesters would return.

“It was very orchestrated,” said Catherine Keogan, the project manager. She said mobile phones did not work in the hall and she reported the incident to gardai on Tuesday morning.

“The danger with these things is they can get out of hand very quickly,” Keogan said. “They say they’re peaceful protests but, when someone comes in and snatches your work and takes it outside and burns it, you can’t call that peaceful.”

“People have a right to information and you can’t go into an area and not tell people about it.

“What we normally do is have a representative go door-to-door and invite people with questions to contact us. We have had someone going door-todoor for the past few months in this area.”

The company, based in Stradone, Co Cavan, plans to submit an application to Laois and Kilkenny county councils within six weeks, seeking permission to build its planned Pinewoods wind farm.

Galetech wants to erect 11 85m-high turbines in the townlands of Knockardagur, Boleybawn, Ironmills, Graiguenahown and Garrintaggart.

A previous application was rejected because the company had not carried out a natural impact statement detailing the area’s natural habitats and wild flora and fauna.

Henry Fingleton, the chairman of Wind Aware Ireland, read a statement of protest in the hall on Monday night before the fire was lit. He has said there will be more protests.

“We assured the people in the hall there was no threat to them. We have been very responsible,” Fingleton said.

“We decided to take direct action because we allowed Coillte to come in before and disseminate what we believe is untrue information; that these wind farms are beneficial for communities. They damage visual amenity and property values, not to mention the noise and shadow flicker.”

Coillte, the state-owned forestry company, operates 18 turbines at Cullenagh mountain, less than five miles from Spink.

Fingleton is a member of People Over Wind, which last week lodged a challenge in the Court of Appeal against the Cullenagh mountain farm.

“We’re classified as Nimbys but we have sound environmental and social reasons for being opposed to wind farms,” he said.
The Sunday Times

1397574371-dublin-thousands-gather-to-protest-against-pylons-and-wind-turbines_4479876

Easter 2014: 10,000 fightin’ Irish on the march.
And they’re still fighting as hard as ever.

***

Angry warning from villagers against huge turbines plan near Chislet
Kent Online
Aidan Barlow
31 July 2015

Hundreds of furious villagers stormed a renewable energy firm’s open day to protest against gigantic wind turbines proposed for the heart of the Canterbury countryside.

RES Ltd unveiled plans to build 11 new turbines as tall as 150 metres on marshland near Chislet and Marshside.

The structures stand taller than the London Eye.

tall turbine

A 150-metre high turbine – compares with …. ?

***

But the proposal has sparked outrage from residents who believe they will blight the rural landscape and damage wildlife.

MP Sir Roger Gale was among those who went to the Chislet Centre to take part in the consultation on Monday night. He said: “I was asked for a meeting by the company. I told them my starting position is ‘no’ and my end position will also be ‘no’ because I’ve taken the view that, like the national grid pylons, these are totally unacceptable.

Sir Roger Gale MP spoke against the plans

Sir Roger Gale MP: ‘no’ means ‘NO’.

****

“The message to RES has to go out loud and clear. This is a non-starter. Don’t even waste your time and money on a scoping exercise. A planning application would be rejected.

“Please take your project somewhere else, we don’t want it here.”

He pointed out that subsidies for onshore wind energy had been withdrawn, and that government guidelines would give the final say to local people about schemes.

Stop the Chislet Windfarm committee chairman Dr Ashley Lupin says RES will face strong resistance.

Firing off a warning to the firm, he said: “We are determined this is not going to happen. We local people are not the handful of country bumpkins that you were expecting to walk all over. We are passionate, we are angry and we are organised.

say no

RES: feeling the locals’ ‘love’ in Chislet.

****

“I can assure you we will fight you and this plan for as long as it takes. But we do not want this fight. We don’t want to have to spend all the time and emotional energy in fighting this battle.

“I make this plea: Do not even apply for planning consent, and leave our little unspoiled corner of England, and us, alone.”

But RES project manager Helen Wilson says the turbines will be more than a kilometre from the nearest houses and could bring as much as £137,000 in benefits to the local area.

She said: “This project is viable in a subsidy-free environment. It is a small-size project that we are used to doing.

“We should definitely be looking at renewables for our future and keeping the lights on. This will be providing energy that powers everyone’s iPhones, laptops and everything else. Demands for energy are increasing and finite resources are declining.

“We can’t just bury our heads in the sand and carry on as we are. We need to be doing something urgently.”

She added that research is being done alongside the RSPB and Natural England to assess the impact on local wildlife.

A planning application is still expected by the end of the year.
Kent Online

angry-mob

About stopthesethings

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

Comments

  1. Keith Staff says:

    RES are looking at a proposal for a 223 turbines 175 m tall
    Industrial wind energy facility ( IWEF) – they are not wind farms – to be located just 3 kms from our small historic town in South west Victoria.

    This monster industrial development would adjoin the existing MacArthur 160 turbine wind factory having well known noise and health impacts on residents. These people would be surrounded by massive turbines with unacceptable cumulative impacts for so many in the unlikely event of the Penshurst proposal gaining a planning permit.

    Our local protest group in Penshurst have been fighting the proposal for several years,and have been successful in casting
    doubts in the minds of the proponents ,no planning permit
    application has been made.

    We have retained the services of a lawyer and barrister to look
    after our interests. Warning letters have been issued to landholders who have signed agreements to have turbines on their properties.

    Everyone has a legal right to live in peace and quiet in their own home.

    You think that RES are in a hell of a fight ? ….. You bet.

    We will prevail.

    Keith Staff.
    Penshurst.

  2. NO BAGOT WELL/ST KITTS WIND FARM says:

    RES Australia has taken over ownership from DP ENERGY of the Bagot Well/St Kitts wind mast between Truro and Eudunda in South Australia.

    The small local community recently expressed their objections to the RES application to extend the approval of the monitoring mast with 85 representations against the application.

    RES is not welcome here either.

    http://www.light.sa.gov.au/webdata/resources/minutesAgendas/DAP%20Agenda-6May2015.pdf

    At the Development Assessment Panel meeting to decide on the application, representors were stunned to witness an extraordinary display of bias.

    A motion to approve the application failed to find a seconder on the first call, or on the second call. On the third call for a seconder, after a very long pause a novice member on the panel succumbed to the pressure of being eyeballed by the Presiding Member; and tentatively raised a finger in support. The ensuing vote was tied, and the PM cast a deciding vote to approve the extension.

    Democracy and due process in action! NOT!

    Rest assured the community has been galvanised in it’s opposition to this project; and, like the residents of Chislet, say to RES – don’t waste your money on developing this project further – you are not welcome here!

  3. Jackie Rovenksy says:

    These companies do not want people to ask questions; at meetings they are ready with their spiel and to blind you with the glossy bumf. The last thing they want is to answer questions and they don’t mind bringing in the police if things get a bit tough for them.

    Just remember what happened at a ‘controlled’ meeting for the CERES project on the Yorke Peninsular, SA.

    Not only did they attempt to control the people by only allowing in 25 at a time for the slick presentation of their advertising they did not even provide a time for Q & A sessions.
    Information Yes, but only what they want you to have.

    It also possible this is the way those in Planning Offices and other places where these companies have to go to gain acceptance are treated, and the sharp salesmanship is not recognised because of the shine from the glossy literature.

    If a company comes to your district, ensure they cannot have ‘controlled’ meetings; they should always be open to all, no one on one sessions and all with plenty of Q & A time.

    Go with some understanding of this industry and how they operate.

    Have questions ready to ask.

    You can check what they are going to present by looking on their websites, they will not divert much from this advertising propaganda, so more detailed questions can be prepared beforehand. Don’t accept whitewash answers; don’t accept answers which only repeat what you have already been told in their propaganda speech/presentation.

    Look deeper and none of this stuff tells you anything, not even their applications tell anything other than what they want you to know, if anyone dares ask a deeper than surface question they are considered the enemy. Be ready to respond with more questions.

    The companies have been frightened of people seeing through their black curtain of deceit they will go to any length to keep it impenetrable. Unfortunately for them many people are educated, able to read and withstand the slick advertising and presentations. The internet has given people the opportunity to grow in the light and strengthen their resolve to be heard and respected.

    The light of truth has broken through the curtain and truth is fading it and causing it to disintegrate.

    Remember it is your home, district and environment and no one has a right to destroy it.

  4. “We are passionate, we are angry and we are organised.”
    I look forward to the day when every rural community in the world can say this loudly and clearly to industrial wind companies.

  5. Wind parasites are so full of themselves and their narrative they exist in a fact-free zone. For example:

    Keogan said. “They say they’re peaceful protests but, when someone comes in and snatches your work and takes it outside and burns it, you can’t call that peaceful.”

    Yet ironically wind developers do just that throughout the countryside.

  6. E Griffiths says:

    My heart bleeds for Galetech – they must have been severely traumatised at the meeting 😀 If removing company propaganda from a meeting and burning it, without threatening anyone with violence is NOT peaceful protest … then can we assume that torturing and traumatising wind turbine neighbours (human and non human) for years on end (with govt approval) IS peaceful???

    This is a fine example of the windustry being guilty of gross hypocrisy and double standards. The planning system is already heavily stacked in favour of developers in our “democracy”.

    Our govts are not allowed to torture terrorist suspects during interrogation but the same govts turn a blind eye to the torture inflicted by the windustry on unwilling, law abiding wind farm neighbours living in their own homes … it’s no wonder people have started taking direct action to protect their health and the health of their families.

  7. Reblogged this on WeatherAction News and commented:
    The quote from the project manager is rich irony 🙂

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