Wind Turbine Battle is Being Fought by Wrong Generation

In Prince Edward County, Ontario, a line has been drawn between those in favour of the turbines and those against.

Those who have supported this green energy alternative right from the start tend to be family members of the original county settlers.

Those opposed to the wind turbines are newcomers to the county - people who have invested here as a place to live or do business.     

Ugly and Threaten Property Values

Know as NIMBYs (Not In My Back Yard), they predominantly oppose the wind turbines because of their unsightly appearance and/or potential threat to their home's property values, and hence their investment.

The NIMBYs are at a stage in life to have more resources, experience and personal time - and as such, the quality and persistence of their presentations and media/public relations is excellent.

We're Not Hearing from the Right Voices: Under 40s

The problem is that we are not hearing from the right voices - those of the people who will have to live within the effects of our legacy of irresponsible use of non-renewable resources.

I am referring to the under-40-somethings, who are trying to find jobs, buy their first homes, and are concerned about the environment.

With respect to the NIMBY's main issue - property values - there is no substantive evident to support any of the arguments for or against the turbines.

Another fear, that, turbines might have a negative effect on our tourist industry, is equally debatable.

However, for the sake of an argument, though, let's say that properties values would be adversely affected... that still might be insignificant to the under-40s who have bigger, more global priorities.

The world has changed, and the next generation will have to live under new rules, with less opportunity and within the added constraints of cleaning up after us.

The older generation (Boomers), of which I am one, is good at debating the options and pontificating on the solutions; the younger generation may want us to act - starting NOW.

Wind turbines are a step in the right direction.

Bill Rorabeck is broker of record with CENTURY 21 Lanthorn Real Estate Ltd. based in Picton, Ontario.


  1. Don Ross 07/21/2009 at 3:08 PM

    Well said Bill. Here's a quote to keep in mind when us old grey-hairs are making these important decisions ...."The true test of a moral society is the kind of world it leaves for its children." (anonymous )

    What gives our generation the right to maintain this attitude of entitlement that allows us to destroy the earth & leave nothing behind for the next 7 generations? Those who fight against windfarms & any other form of sustainable renewable energy, are defending the status quo and killing hope for all those who follow us.

  2. Jason 07/23/2009 at 2:43 PM

    I suggest we get the NIMBYs to spend 2 weeks living in downtown Toronto and then 2 weeks beside a wind farm and ask which atmosphere they prefer. Agree with point in article. As part of Gen X, I feel adamant that we continue to increase our production of renewable energy along with baseload support from the 'nuclear generation'.

  3. Anonymous 08/10/2009 at 9:01 AM

    Mr. Rorabeck, how dare you assume: "Those opposed to the wind turbines are newcomers to the county - people who have invested here as a place to live or do business." My family and I have lived here for generations and we are disgusted with the wind turbine projects, as are many other long-time County residents. I suggest you do some research - as it sounds like you haven't done any - before posting these hideous comments.

  4. windturbines 09/10/2009 at 4:09 AM

    We have to say that there were some problems for the wind turbines, such as the noisy, the killing birds and the affect to its near people. However we should see the future of new energy, not only the wind turbine but also the solar panel. Wind power as a clean and alternative energy, many companies are trying to do the better wind turbiens for people, like Vestas, GE, Aeolos, Helix and Simens. There are a fast development in wind turbine industry in the past ten years.

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