Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Detroit News scribe feels his friends' pain: Lakefront swells bothered by wind turbines!

The Detroit News’ Henry Payne asks how wind turbines are the symbol of the green movement before declaring them eyesores on the grounds that his friends don’t like to see them behind their lakefront homes.

His friends “cursed the farmers” who leased their land for wind development – because, hey, how dare these struggling farmers try to make ends meet at the expense of the backyard view of the swells with lakeshore real estate?

His lakefront buds wouldn’t have it so rough, opines Henry, if environmental wackos stopped trying to promote clean, cheap wind energy to replace centralized coal plants that “feed water vapor into the sky.”

Some thoughts for Henry:

1. In 2010, the state’s coal plants released 15.5 million tons of toxic pollutants, not including Henry’s water vapor. Those emissions contributed to mercury in Great Lakes fish, childhood asthma, heart disease and respiratory ailments to name a few. Every megawatt of coal power displaced by wind reduces those emissions.

2. Wind energy prices have dropped so low that our state’s major utilities have both virtually eliminated the renewable energy “surcharge” on residential ratepayer bills. At the same time, the conventional portion of our energy bills – which reflects our 60% reliance on expensive, out-of-state coal, is rising. Don’t take our word for it, read the state’s report.

3. More than 20,000 people are employed in the wind and solar supply chain in Michigan.

As for his lakefront friends’ inconvenience, Henry should feel welcome to share cocktails with Michiganders on the other side of the equation and relay their struggles as well. Perhaps he can visit Southwest Detroit to watch the sunset over the haze of emissions from coal power plants, an oil refinery, waste incinerator, steel mills and water treatment plant.

Henry can explain to them how another smokestack in their 'hood is a small price to pay to ensure his friends' fragile sensibilities aren't offended.



  1. First of all, the picture that he posts with his whine is actually kind of pretty. I think windmills look pretty.

    Second, our family owns lake-front property on Lake Michigan. The wind is plentiful and constant. I would HAPPILY view the soaring blades on the water (particularly if our electricity bill dropped along the way).

    Third - why doesn't he just move to Wisconsin, where he can complain with the rest of them.

  2. If they don't want to look at wind turbines, they should be forced to get their power from one of three options: a nuclear reactor, a coal-fired power plant, or an incinerator. And whatever option they choose must be housed within 100 yards of their lakefront home.

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