By its own admission, Tradewind acknowledged that it silently came into our area over 10 years ago. Why did they do this?
Like all corporations with money to invest, they were seeking someplace where their investment could grow. The new popular trend in Washington, D.C. was to encourage “green” investments, so this was the lucrative bandwagon Tradewind chose to ride. In spite of all the publicity to the contrary, they did not come to DeWitt County to make the people here prosperous. They came to make money.
In order to do this, it was necessary for them to convince enough of the local politicians and landowners that Tradewind was here to provide us with a cornucopia of vast wealth. The only thing necessary for everyone to partake of these vast riches was for the people of the county to turn a blind eye to the destruction of the landscape. If we would simply exchange our unspoiled, open vistas for an array of huge metal towers, everyone would benefit. In other words, if we would sacrifice the lifestyle we love for the sake of “progress,” almost unlimited wealth would enrich us all.
A large amount of money has been spent to convince the public that those opposing such a scheme are not in touch with reality. Those who oppose the wind farms are behind the times, not in favor of progress and might even be somewhat backwards in their thinking. The wave of the future is for everyone to prosper from free money taken from the free air around us.
The largrest amount of any money made from the wind farms will be made by Tradewind. DeWitt County will not see reduced energy rates nor lower taxes from this “windfall,” but the millions of people living in Chicago and other metropolitan areas will benefit from our sacrifice. When Tradewind can offer an explanation about why the people of Chicago should not have the towers in their backyards, then maybe more of us will be more inclined to listen. No one questions that in 20 years or so these shiny metal towers will have become expensive, government-subsidized scrap metal. If our neighbors in the metropolitan area will commit in writing that they will pay for the removal of these used towers, that would also go a long way toward easing some of our concerns.
P.S.: We are currently discussing Phase 1 of the tower complex. However, Phases 2 and 3 are already in the works. How many more “phases” await our discovery?
Editor’s Note: On the front page of the June 13, 2008 edition of the Clinton Journal, the newspaper published a story about two local public meetings hosted by the Illinois Farm Bureau during which representatives of Tradewind Energy explained the company’s plan for a pair of wind farms in northern DeWitt County. Each of those meetings attracted about 400 residents. Tradewind officials detailed the size and scope of the project, how it would alter the landscape and the reasons DeWitt County was selected. The Clinton Journal again reported about the projects on the front page of its June 17, 2008 edition and again in 2009.