Wind Farm Proposal

The Opinion of Kate McCarthy

The Proposal

I enjoy taking my kids to the Daisy Stem Open Space. They love the extra area to run and play. Recently, ACME Inc, has decided that it would like to use the Daisy Stem space as the location of a new wind farm. I dove in and did some research to see if it's really worth it.
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Argument For

Why should we?

Helps Rural Economy

  • Developers of wind farms pay farmers and ranchers to lease the land for wind farms. This money helps the farmers and boosts the rural economy

Keeps the environment clean

  • Wind turbines create no emissions while creating energy, so nothing gets caught in the atmosphere, pollutes lakes, or creates greenhouse gases.


  • Wind energy is created on the spot by the wind. It is created every day, as opposed to fossil fuels, which takes hundreds of millions of years to make.

Cost Effective

  • When taking into account building, operating, maintenance of farms/plants, and obtaining fuel, the EIA estimates that the cost of wind energy is lower than or equal to natural gases, nuclear energy, and coal. Not to mention that wind turbine technology is changing, allowing more energy to be generated, thus making the price of wind energy decrease with every new advance in technology.

Argument Against

Why shouldn't we?

Noise Pollution

  • Wind turbines can be heard by anyone who lives a mile from the blades. Within 400 meters from a wind turbine, the blades can be heard above other noises. This limits where wind turbines can be placed.

Effects on Wildlife

  • Wind turbines kill anywhere between 214,000 and 368,000 birds annually. An 11-year study showed that each wind turbine can be known to kill an average of 16 - 21 birds a year. While proper siting of a wind farm can prevent this, this is another limit to where wind can be used.

Intermittent Power

  • Wind turbines only generate power when the wind is blowing. This makes it difficult to control on an energy grid. With fossil fuels or natural gas, people can control how much power gets generated. So if there is a sudden need for more power, natural gases and fossil fuels are a lot more reliable as opposed to wind farms that don't always run.

Location of Farm vs. Location of Energy Needs

  • Generally, energy is needed more in cities with large populations. Typically, these cities don't exactly have the strongest wind. Although new developments are coming around to produce large amounts of power with little wind, as of now, there is a difficulty in transferring energy from rural wind farms to urban cities in need of energy.

Is It Worth It?

Yes, It is!

Although the arguments against it pose legitimate concerns, ACME's proposed wind farm in the Daisy Stem Open Space would benefit many and therefore, is a great idea. We would conserve our other resources because wind energy doesn’t pollute the air or water. Our community wouldn’t have to get its power imported, like we need to with fossil fuels. We also would stop taking away non-renewable resources, so we can have our energy without worrying about our supply dying out. Even though the turbines themselves are huge, the base only takes up a small portion of the land, so the space will not be rendered as useless by the general public, or my family. As long as the farm has an adequate setback from the neighborhood and will be appropriately placed so it doesn't disrupt the Open Space, I think that this proposal is well worth it.