Letter: Turbines threaten wildlife, habitat
To the editor of THE EAGLE:
As a resident of Peru, I am very concerned about the wind energy proposal for our town. The wind turbines would be located in a part of town designated by the state as core habitat for wildlife, which is defined as "habitats for rare, vulnerable, or uncommon mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, fish, invertebrates and plant species." While there is no official protection for most of these areas, the purpose of these designations is so that communities will be careful to protect these areas from development. Turbines, in particular, are proving to be very intrusive upon wildlife.
In a 2009 paper about health effects of wind turbines on humans, researcher Keith Stelling states "Reinforcing this body of knowledge is the research that has been conducted on animals. Long-term studies by European biologists indicate that habitat disturbance and abandonment takes place around wind turbine developments. Further research on animals indicates that basic survival functions such as hunting, self protection and reproduction are interrupted by low frequency noise exposure." In nearby Florida and Monroe, residents near the Hoosac Wind Project have reported a very noticeable decline in wildlife near their homes. It will be no different in Peru. Our precious wildlife will be diminished.
When it comes to large wind turbines, we should be concerned about our real estate values and our health but we also have an obligation to protect those who cannot protect themselves, specifically wildlife and their habitat. Peru bylaws call for conserving the natural condition of the landscapes most of us value. I am planning to attend future Zoning Board of Appeals hearings. Please take notice of postings as to when these meetings take place and plan to attend if you are able.
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