Sunday, August 14, 2005

Pseudo-Environmental Opposition to Wind Farms

So which is uglier, this

or this?

People, which now include my neighbors, are opposed to building wind farms in Upstate NY because they will ruin views and spoil the landscape. Sometimes this mascarades as environmetalism, but it is really just NIMBYism. These people, whom my down the street neighbor advertises with a yard sign, are more naked about their concerns: property values.

In any case, the worry that wind farms will ruin the natural beauty of upstate NY is astonishly weak. I can't think of a more straightforward example of a case where moral values trump aesthetic values. If we do not rid ourselves of our dependence on fossil fuels, there will be more wars as nations fight over the remaining supplies. In fact, humanity faces no more pressing problem than how to navigate the transition away from fossil fuels to sustainable resources.

Anti-wind people will say that we don't need wind to wean ourselves from oil. I imagine a sinking ship and someone saying: "I don't think we have to take the ugly green lifeboat. I bet we can all fit in the nicer lifeboats." Maybe. I think we should use every boat that floats.

Also, I don't see anyone volunteering to put a nuclear plant in the Tug Hill region.

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