Brickyard Pond, new turbine site?

Brickyard Pond, new turbine site?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Information on the project

Citizens Wind Watch of Barrington Needs Your Help

STOP the Town Council from prematurely approving an expenditure of $2.4 million of taxpayer money for a wind turbine based on inaccurate, misleading and unsubstantiated findings

Fact 1: On June 7, 2007, the Barrington Exploratory Wind Power Committee recommended 7 initial steps the Town should take to determine if a wind turbine should be considered. They determined - The most crucial step to be… “Obtaining accurate wind data”.

As of September 15, 2008, the Committee for Renewable Energy in Barrington (CREB) has stated they do not feel wind studies are necessary for any site within the Town. Of the remaining 6 steps presented, the Town failed to complete; conducting Energy Audits on all owned properties, investigating aggregation opportunities with East Bay communities, obtaining the services of a skilled, professional energy consultant, and have not completed education and outreach efforts.

Fact 2: The CREB was created by the Town Council to investigate all renewable energy options available.

However, as soon as the Town received notice that we were approved for the zero interest LOAN from the IRS, the CREB’s charge has been to plow ahead with plans for a turbine. The tunnel vision exhibited by the CREB has ignored any challenge or objection presented with the sole intent of utilizing this funding source. They have lost sight of what their true mandate was. Every document produced by the CREB appears biased and self-serving in favor of a wind turbine without regard for community impact.

Fact 3: No external, third party professional reports, environmental impact, noise, economic, or health and safety, have been contracted or presented to the community.

Current potential sites range from our High School to environmentally sensitive areas around Town. One site listed as “The Legion Way site” is really the Brickyard Pond Conservation Area. A portion of the site is a capped land fill that was used by our DPW and the Newth Rubber Company until the 1950’s. Since then, this site has blossomed into a habitat for wildlife including water fowl, birds of prey, fish and woodland animals. However, the pond is still stressed with low oxygen and poor water quality.

Fact 4: The presented economic and financial analysis has not been validated for accuracy by any un-affiliated, non-biased third party experts.

Fact 5: CREB states that at the Brickyard Pond Site, outdoor noise at the nearest home will be 41 dBA, resulting in sound levels that are well within World Health Organization (WHO) standards both for day and night.

CREB does not cite known research which quotes the WHO stating “sound levels during nighttime and late evening hours should be less than 30 dBA during sleeping periods to protect children’s health. “When sound levels are 45 dBA outside a home, we expect that the interior sound levels will not drop to the 30 dBA level needed in sleeping areas. This is because the low frequency content of the noise can penetrate the homes walls and roof with little power reduction.”

Another study referenced found some residents living 1.86 miles from a wind farm complain of sleep disturbance from the noise. Many residents living 984 feet from the wind farms experience major sleep disruption and other serious medical problems.

For more information, please go to or

Turbine Maintenance Trouble, 9/5/08

Survey Says 60% of US Wind Turbines May Be Behind in Maintenance
California, United States []

Frontier Pro Services has released the results of an informal survey of approximately 75 wind farm operators in the United States. Designed to assess the specific operation and maintenance service needs of wind energy operators, the survey reveals what could be serious threats to wind farms largely because of the industry-wide shortage of qualified turbine technicians, Frontier said.

According to the findings, many wind farm operations and maintenance teams are so resource constrained that they are barely able to keep up with the unscheduled maintenance repairs their wind turbines require to continue generating electricity. Even regular, scheduled preventative-maintenance like oil changes and gearbox lubrication (services that are often still under warranty) are falling behind as manufacturers face similar resource struggles related to the shortage of qualified technicians. Gearbox failures account for the largest amount of downtime, maintenance, and lose of power production. These costly failures can total 15-20% of the price of the turbine itself, making wind turbine and gearbox maintenance a high priority. “Most gearbox failures are preventable,” said Jack Wallace, lead technical advisor for Frontier Pro Services. “Most gearboxes fail as a direct result of improper lubrication and lack of routine maintenance. With so many turbines behind on inspections and regular service, there is real cause for concern here,” Mr. Wallace continued. If oil is not properly monitored and replaced as needed, bearing and gear wear will lead to more serious and costly damage to the drive train. According to Frontier, when a US $1,500 bearing fails unnoticed, it can lead to production loss and revenue loss including an unscheduled replacement of a US $100,000 dollar gearbox and a unscheduled crane cost of up to US $70,000 to access the failed components. The Frontier Pro Services Operations & Maintenance survey was conducted through a combination of informal phone interviews and in-person meetings with operations and maintenance technicians, wind farm operators, and wind farm owners during the first six months of 2008. The results of this survey come as earlier this year a 200-foot Vestas wind turbine near the city of Ã…rhus in Denmark disintegrated in high winds when a blade came loose and hit the central tower, causing the whole structure to collapse. Two days later a blade broke off of a turbine near Sidinge, Denmark.