We are responding to a column from the Center for Rural Affairs that was printed recently in The Bethel Citizen (July 26). It was titled “Are property values affected by wind farms?” The organization, based in Nebraska, is a nonprofit corporation aiding rural concerns in predominantly agricultural landscapes. The column didn’t specifically address other land uses.
According to the column, rural land is unaffected in value by the presence of massive wind turbines. The term “rural land” was broadly used. The column did not address problems faced by landowners who live nearby in communities with year-round and seasonal housing close by. Mountains here contribute to amplified effects, echoing industrial turbine sound vibrations.
Tourism is now a large part of the local economy since the closing of many wood mills. Local properties that are in proximity to corporately owned and managed turbines will lose their value.
These landscapes are like a comparison of oranges and apples. Or, more nearly, between wide-open working spaces with no mountainous reverberations — and mountainous neighborhoods of homes, lakes, brooks and family-raising and leisure activities.
The Center for Rural Affairs’ column might have been more even-handed, explanatory and considerate of locals.
Greenwood will be voting on a proposed wind tower ordinance on Aug. 6.
Ronald and Susan Dorman, Bethel