Thank you for responding, but…

Before I say anything else I want to thank you for articulating a response and for being respectful, even when your opponent is a high school student. I also want to thank you for accepting the scientific consensus of climate change, although I shouldn’t have to thank someone for that, it should be common sense. While I greatly appreciate the respectful nature of your response, there are several unsubstantiated claims that you argue on. Additionally, not only were some of these claims are not supported by evidence, they were refuted by it. I hope to demonstrate these mistakes and explain in more detail why myself, and youth around the world, are fighting for action against the climate crisis.

A primary claim you make is that the addition of wind turbines on your property will decrease its value if you ever choose to sell it. According to a study done in 2013, when all factors are considered (age of the home, size, and distance from a turbine), home/property value does not decrease (Hoen et al., 2013). This study analyzed 51,276 different homes and concluded that no significant difference in price before and after construction was present. What this means is that if any difference was present in the price pre and post construction it was less than or equal to $354.91. To truly put this figure into perspective, this amount was less than 1% of the mean home value. Trust me, I did the math myself. Another claim you make is that the wind turbines are unreliable. Although you didn’t provide any evidence, I assume you attribute this to varying wind speed and direction. According to the United States Department of Energy the wind speed needed to turn a turbine is 9 mph or more, the average wind speed for Tiffin is about 10.3 mph (Global Modeling and Assimilation Office, NASA). One health-related claim you make is that, when exposed to for long periods of time, shadow flicker causes adverse health effects. According to a review of the scientific literature in 2011, “No direct causal link between people living in close proximity to modern wind turbines, the noise they emit and resulting physiological health effects is present.” I also found no evidence supporting the following claims: “the Republic Wind Farm would only generate a small amount of power for only half as long as promised,” the wind turbines would be” 600 feet“, “the turbines are unsafe,” and “the turbines can throw ice beyond the current safety setback.” Like I stated previously, not only are your claims unsubstantiated by evidence, some are refuted by evidence.

I also want to briefly cover the various personal attacks that have been directed at me since the publishing of my essay. These attacks have ranged from me, a 16 year old high school student, being paid off by the American Wind Energy Association to me being indoctrinated by the school system to align with the “progressive agenda.” To the people who made these accusations: I want you to rethink those statements again. Simply because someone argues against your stance on an issue you label them as either a product of indoctrination or a corporate sellout, all at the age of 16. I stand to gain nothing from this wind farm, besides the hope of a survivable future.

No, I’m not going to call you a monster, I’m not going to say you hate the environment when your words say otherwise, your actions however, paint a different picture. I strongly agree with you when you say that you support clean energy, but only to the point where it doesn’t hurt people. However, switching to clean energy isn’t just for the fun of it, it’s about saving lives. And again, saving lives is not necessarily worth ending lives. But, that’s not what we’re proposing, we’re proposing the sacrifice of some luxuries. Yes, in your opinion, the turbines may be an eyesore. Yes, it may be a pain to deal with workers. But ask yourself, is sacrificing a small portion of your property, a half an hour to argue with a worker, or a bit of the scenic landscape worth it? Is sacrificing a small amount of our privileges as Americans worth saving the entire planet?

To give the editors a break and to avoid the unnecessary use of these longform type replies, please contact me at brakstinhockley@gmail.com for any further refutations or responses.

Brakstin Hockley