We're off to see ... the wonderful scam A place to be heard TOW...

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A n amazed Dorothy looked at the big, gleaming, gold, onion-shaped cupolas atop the Holy Ascension Orthodox Church.
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21 - 35 of 35 Comments Last updated Jul 13, 2009
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Duke

Orefield, PA

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#22
Jul 3, 2009
 
Go back to the 50's Paul!
Sharon in DC

Washington, DC

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#23
Jul 3, 2009
 
All the great columnists make sure that tyheir readers have the facts that they are giving opinions about. OK, you had great fun bashing Kansas (and I bet you would have great fun defending us if a local columnist in Kansas bashed Pennsylvania). But you just threw out what you think is a fact -- that wind farms are a scam. Now, how do you know? What makes you think that? How much energy is produced and how much is used up in that production? How does that compare to other forms, like nuclear power or burning coal to generate electricity? What are the pros and cons of those technologies compared to wind? What are the risks of other forms of energy compared to wind? Do other forms of energy get the kind of government subsidies that make you so angry? How many of us actually think windfarms are ugly, compared to the horrific damage done by strip mining and the mining of mountaintops? Boondoggle? I think not. We're in big trouble with our energy use. We need to balance our needs with all sorts of things -- cost, effect on life and the environment, how much we can afford to pay as consumers, how much we use compared to the rest of the world, what will be left for future generations. It's not Kansas you should be bashing.
MustBeMe

Allentown, PA

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#24
Jul 3, 2009
 
I wonder just how much coal was mined and sent to fire the electric generators before underground coal fires consumed the ravaged town of Centralia? See those heaps of coal stacked outside the mines up that way? Lovely!

I think a propeller is a h-llva lot less unsightly then mountains made of coal or a great big strip mine hole. AND the best part, nobody has to crawl down a mine shaft 10 stories below ground to choke on coal dust for a living. The worse that could happen is one or two pinwheels blow over.

Beats the dickens out of all the sirens wailing out by 3 mile island years back. OR having containers full of radioactive material laying around these plants over the next 1,000 years to tempt terrorists.

And of course I have no idea how much money you have to throw at the foreign controlled petroleum industry or our high profit American refineries.

But.. hey, it must be me that's nutz, eh?
MustBeMe

Allentown, PA

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#25
Jul 3, 2009
 
This is better?
1906 Coal Mine Frackville, PA
http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/H_2U6dQK...

Then having to see these Windmill Power turbines on the mountain ridge near Frackville, and Mahanoy City PA
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jbmac/3626552238...

COME ON!!!!!!!!!
John Birch

United States

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#26
Jul 3, 2009
 
Maybe they need to start building windmills in that fake tree style that they do with cell towers in some places.
I hate to agree with Paul even a little, but I have to comment that there is not much you can do to deter from the "look" of the Frackville area. Anything at all is an improvement.

“Carbon Neutral”

Since: May 07

Berks and Lehigh Counties

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#27
Jul 3, 2009
 
Paul and I had a discussion late last year about how his views and mine differ on wind turbines. He was writing about the turbines in the Coachella Valley south of Joshua Tree National Park and west of Palm Springs in southern California. If memory serves, we were able to see the other's point - mine being that the location of the California turbines was ideal, even if it did spoil the view.

Very difficult decisions have to be made in the future about where we're going to get our power. Nuclear plants are much safer today than they were when TMI was built. The newest ones are being built in Europe now as part of a *system* of power generation.

As far as despoiling the land in Schuylkill County is concerned, much of it was already trashed when the land was discovered to have windflow steady enough to warrant turbines. Compare that with the tailings from the strip mines I remember from my five years in Frackville as a child. The chemicals used in the extraction of coal almost killed the river as far south as the Delaware.

Schuylkill County has been torn apart since the 1800s for its energy resources. For the last half of the 19th century and the second half of the 20th century, miners extracted coal. Now, it's electricity they're mining.

I'm disgusted with what they've done to the forests - and I agree with Paul here - and yet I would like to see any environmental damage confined to as small an area as possible. It's expensive to build new high-tension lines to tie into the Northeastern grid, and Schuylkill County is close enough to Philadelphia and New York to be a reasonable source for energy.

We're the ones driving around, and the ones with LCD TVs, computers, electric heat (including dryers and water heaters), and we work in buildings which require power for air conditioning and light. We've made our own nest, and we have to feather it one way or another. Perhaps we'll have to use the blades of wind turbines as the building blocks for our nests of the future.
Clem Cudiddlehopper

AOL

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#28
Jul 3, 2009
 
Paul Carpenter is a legend in his own mind.

Hey Paul, when you get done telling us about the beautiful Japanese culture that you hold in such high regard, tell us again about the rape of Nanking. The Bataan Death March retelling would be a real yuckfest, too. You fargin' hypocrite.
Sunlover

Allentown, PA

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#29
Jul 3, 2009
 
Paul, now I know why you ride your bike without a helmet: NOTHING TO PROTECT.

Get a real job.

HACK!
Another CoalBarron

Catawissa, PA

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#30
Jul 4, 2009
 
Ah yes another anonymous poster , you know the kind our founding fathers relished, that every ones opinion even those who do not wish to be placed on a government or local politicians enemy list should be heard but then Carpenter despises them as he does benign electrical generation. How he misses the good ole days of soot and toxic smoke billowing into the air, the rivers dead with mine runoff. Of course on his drive he never saw or his bias against the environment prevented him from seeing the toxic arsenic and mercury spewing co-gen plants that have replaced the mountain top trees. Of course he only sees what he wants to see and lives no where near the pollution our children must endure each and everyday. It will be a good day when the old worn out and polluting dinosaurs like the co-gen plants and Mr. Carpenter are gone, it will be a new day for the earth and we will all breath a little better.
Sunlover

Allentown, PA

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#31
Jul 4, 2009
 
I repeat, HACK! I've had the distinct unpleasant experience of meeting this arrogant dinosaur. He gives cycling a bad name, his opinions are biased to the point of irrelevancy. TMC could save some desperately needed resources by SACKING THE HACK.

Crawl back under your rock Paul.
Sue

Macungie, PA

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#32
Jul 5, 2009
 
Paul, I do think Allentown IS Kansas now. Also, what about the CASTLES going on in Bethlehem??? Sands money scam???
Thanks for the research and sharing. Of ALL of our fiascos in the Valley and surroundings.
Sue

Macungie, PA

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#33
Jul 5, 2009
 
Paul you are absolutely right to bring this up. It is just another scam - Stimulus for energy efficient??? Wind Mills? Back to the dark ages boys for political endorsements for non-functional outfits to scam dollars for OHbama's gifting!!! Get real!!!! Bet they just opened these SHOPS??? to get in on the political Dole!! What a gas!!!!
Oh, excuse me - what windbags - Right on, Paul!!!!
Kevin Schulte

Fairport, NY

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#34
Jul 13, 2009
 
Opinions will vary on the looks of wind turbines and wind farms, but the facts are the facts. Every aspect of these projects has been studied and is scientifically understood. The experts who designed, installed and built these projects studied the effects on birds, bats, ice, visual impacts and other environmental issues. The communities surrounding these projects were given the opportunity to discuss their concerns at public meetings and those communities said yes to the projects. It is unfortunate that you were not present at those meetings to express your concerns and even more unfortunate that you have chosen your column to bash the projects in hindsight.

The communities are now benefited by payments that reduce their tax base. The economic development of those communities has been positively effected through the jobs created during the construction of the projects and looking forward in the long term operations of the projects. Benefits to local businesses like gas stations, restaurants, hotels and several others increased during the construction phase of the project and will only continue to grow as people visit the wind farms for years to come.

Your opinion is your opinion, just like people will choose whether a wind turbine is beautiful or not, but in the end the facts are what will win out and in the case of wind energy – the positive effects of projects like those in Schuylkill County outweigh any other effect.

Build Baby Build,
Kevin Schulte
CEO, Sustainable Energy Developments, Inc.
Allentown Native
John Birch

United States

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#35
Jul 13, 2009
 
Kevin Schulte wrote:
Opinions will vary on the looks of wind turbines and wind farms, but the facts are the facts. Every aspect of these projects has been studied and is scientifically understood......
\
I've heard some say the sound of these things scars off wildlife. I've been near them and their sound is NOTHING compared to interstate truck traffic. Wildlife stand and graze on the shoulder of Rt 80 all the time. You'd think that would bother them more than a hum and "whoosh". If a bird got whacked by a blade, it would have to be due to the Darwin priciple. They aren't really moving that fast, except out at the tips. Even then, it would be a fluke to knock a bird out of the air. It would be like a bird flying into your car---could happen but most seem able to dodge you. I think the environmental thing is just a visual objection to a big manmade structure marring a pristine wooded area. Paint these green. Just my .02.
John-27

Van Nuys, CA

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#36
Jul 13, 2009
 
I have to back John Birch (!) and Kevin Schulte up on their statements. The eastern and southern portions of the county are already despoiled. With no topsoil left to speak of, it's hard to expect much to grow except for tenacious conifers and moss..

Correct me if I'm wrong, but people would rather have wind turbines to nuclear reactors, right? And people are not willing to pay more than necessary to buy power from elsewhere.

There are certain prices we have to pay for living in urban areas as densely as we do and in the range of climates found in the Northeast. High demand for power for a/c in the summer is one of those costs we have to meet. If nukes are out and solar is a non-starter because of cloud cover, it's combustion through gas, coal, or oil or wind. I'll take wind every time.

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