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The Wind Divide




It's 3:30 in the morning, and I can't sleep. I woke up thinking about Ferndale; how the residents there decided to reject a wind generator company's proposal to install wind turbines on a ridge behind the town ("Monster Trucking," Sept. 1) because it would "ruin the small-town atmosphere." These feelings of frustration are so typical here on the North Coast. Why turn down an opportunity to positively impact the future of the planet because it's inconvenient, unaesthetic or might cost too much? I remember waking up years ago in McKinleyville to discover that the row of lovely old trees on School Road had been cut down (in the middle of the night) to make way for parking at the new shopping center. Bad choices, over and over. Like the decision to abandon the new, state-of-the-art Arcata Recycling Center to "save money." Always the short-term, short-sighted choice. Leave the ecological problems for our grandchildren and great-grandchildren to clean up, after the polluting and non-renewable coal we are using now for electric generation runs out.

Every choice we make now affects generations to come; our children's children will pay for these mistakes we are making. We have to stop being so selfish and short-sighted. NOW.

I grew up in a rural farming community in Idaho. I moved here in 1980 because of the natural beauty. I fell in love with Humboldt County instantly. One day on my way to work from Los Gatos to Menlo Park (an hour's drive on a good day) I drove past an apricot orchard I loved to look at - all the hundreds of trees were lying on their sides, dead, the ripe fruit still hanging on the branches. I couldn't stop crying. I knew I had to get out of there, to leave the mindlessness of the cities and that greedy, short-sighted abuse of resources and people.

This is my home now, my community. I love it here. Surely we can do better.

Jane Good, Eureka



Windmills sound very green. However, to sacrifice virgin land on a fault-created ridge separating salmonid streams and overflown by marbled murrelets ... to run miles of transmission line through unwilling owners' yards ... to destroy small towns' roads and businesses ... all in the name of "environmentalism" is shallow green, if it can be called green at all.

To threaten boycott against people whose properties and businesses are at risk for seeking to protect themselves (as has happened in the blog comments) is also shallow and not environmental.

 Environment means "everything which surrounds us." That's not only trees and cows, but homes and businesses. I don't think many in Ferndale would be against this project if it were adjacent to infrastructure already capable of dealing with it.

 During the entire construction the towns of Petrolia and Honeydew will be isolated. Anyone entering or leaving will be required to drive an extra hour to hour and a half to get to Ferndale or Fortuna.

 Tell me, how "environmental" is causing people to buy all that extra gas to get around construction which itself is burning a huge amount of fossil fuels?

 Maybe the folks in Ferndale have a clearer vision than people who take shots at others in the blogs, but are too afraid to leave their names.

 I'm not a company shill. My name is here. Read anonymous comments with caution; we all know anyone can post anything in an effort to sway opinion.

 And here's one more thing Ferndalians know. The whole project is being done, not really for profit - because it is not economical - but for huge federal government subsidies, which we all pay.

 So this isn't economic. This isn't environmental. Instead, it's pure corporate greed. And when the project is "over," the local people will be left with the ruins to pick up and the eternal effect on currently undisturbed land.  

 Don't fall for shallow green. The green this company represents is the deep, deep green of federal subsidies, a milk so pure and dark that the average welfare mom is green with envy.

Ellin Beltz, Ferndale


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