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Letter Opposing Tradewind Energy Wind Farm Project

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Posted April 24, 2019

 

Dear Editor:

 

I would like to propose a ‘what if’ scenario to our community. You wake up to rain one morning. The sky looks dark and storms are predicted to last all day. You drop your kids at school and head to work out of town. A little later that morning you hear a severe storm is headed toward DeWitt County. Specifically, the city of Clinton. The National Weather Service and spotters are watching for tornados in the area. You think of your kids, one at Clinton High School, one at the Clinton Junior High and the other at Clinton Elementary. Three schools within a 3-block area.  You make sure your phone is set to go off with weather alerts, so you can keep track of the situation.

 

You are an administrator, principal, teacher at one of the schools in Clinton. You are aware of the impending severe storm. You remain vigilant to weather updates as you need to have time to get the children in your care to safety. You hear that a tornado watch has just been issued so you plan accordingly. A few minutes later someone comes running down the school hall saying a tornado has touched down.  You now have seconds, along with all the other school staff to get the children to safety.

Now you hear the sirens, that should have gone off minutes ago, start to sound.

 

You are a child at one of the schools in the middle of one of your classes. Your teacher is telling your class to calmly but quickly move to your ‘shelter in place’ and that you must go now. You can tell that they are very worried, and you start to get scared. You hear the wind and noise outside the building and someone says there is a tornado. You wonder why the sirens didn’t go off.

 

You are the parent at work monitoring the weather situation in Clinton. Suddenly on the news you hear a tornado has touched down near Rt 54 and Rt 51. Right by the schools. Due to interference by wind turbines the rotation was not spotted in time and the sirens went off too late. Your heart sinks – did our school staff, teachers, kids – all our loved ones – have time to get to safety?

Later that night on the news people in other counties hear about a tornado touching down in Clinton with no warning due to turbines that were allowed to be placed in the mitigation zone for the National Weather Service in Lincoln. They look at each other and say, “what were they thinking when they allowed that to happen.”

 

The residents of DeWitt County are now aware that we have a wind developer wanting to establish multiple wind farms in our area. Some residents are opposed for safety and quality of life reasons. Some residents are for the development because they have been told it will bring money to the schools and leaseholders. No matter your position I am confident we can all agree that the scenario above is something we never want to have happen.  And to those who say it would not occur, “never” happens every day somewhere in the world.

 

A wind developer who would redact information from the SUP regarding the weather information should not be allowed to do business in our county. A wind developer who failed to do the initial siting study properly and failed to note 23 of the proposed turbines are in the mitigation zone for the NWS radar should not be allowed to do business in our county. A wind developer who wants to move forward with a project knowing full well the danger it poses to our residents should not be allowed to do business in our county.  To me, this last fact alone, speaks to the makeup of this company.  

 

I am confident that our county board, made up of our friends and neighbors, who are intelligent and caring DeWitt County residents, would never compromise the safety of even one child for financial benefit.  

 

Sincerely,

Megan Myers
Clinton IL 

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Letter to the Editor Opposing Wind Farm Project

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Posted April 17, 2019

 

Dear Editor:
 

This letter is probably the most important letter that we have ever written.


We are asking you to contact the members of the DeWitt County Board to vote “NO” on the special use application from Tradewind Energy on the proposed Wind Turbine farm.  The three reasons that are important to us and to our community members are safety, drainage, and decommissioning.


Safety:  On May 15, 1968, a tornado struck Wapella, Illinois. My Powers family of nine hovered under a table in the basement listening to the crashing of objects and breaking glass overhead.  We had no warning of this tornado, (there was no Doppler radar) and we were just plain lucky that our family was gathered in the kitchen near the basement stairs when the windows starting blowing out. The beds upstairs were completely stripped by the force of the wind, leaving just the bare mattresses and bed frames.  Shards of glass were impaled in the east walls like knives.  No one could have survived that tornado if they were upstairs in those bedrooms.
As a result of this tornado, four people in the Wapella area died.


We understand that the ALTA Farms II wind project will have turbines that fall into the radar line of sight for the primary beam elevations used for radar detection from the Lincoln Doppler.  Wind farms create motion and turbulence that interferes with radar signals and corrupts data.  ALTA II falls in the Doppler radar classification of Mitigation Zone – moderate to high impacts on radar.  
We feel the redacted enclosure submitted in the application from Tradewind Energy regarding the mitigation zone was inaccurate and deceptive.


The National Weather Service has agreed that the wind turbines are in the wrong place and will affect radar detection of forming tornadoes.  However, the National Weather Service is prohibited by law from speaking out against the project.
If the Doppler cannot detect tornado activity, how will the folks of Wapella and surrounding residents downwind of the wind turbine areas be warned?


Drainage:  Since we own land in the ALTA II area, we are especially concerned about the drainage issue with the wind tower construction cutting through tiles and surface drainage, and also about the flow of water and water table when the concrete pad is 9 – 15 feet deep and 60 feet in diameter at the bottom, and 12 – 15 feet diameter at the top. 


Who completes the drainage repairs?  Who is held accountable that the drainage will be restored and crop yields for all adjacent landowners in the footprint of the towers are not impacted by faulty drainage?


Decommissioning:  Lastly, 25-30 years from now when we have departed this earth and Tradewind Energy has sold ALTA II to the new company owners who in turn have sold to another company and then another company in a foreign country, who is held accountable?  Where does the money come from for decommissioning?  Are these monstrosities left as a scar to mark a folly for all the future generations?


John M. Killian
Mary Pat Killian
Clinton, IL  61727

 

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