One can find and enjoy many things when driving through Upstate New York: beautiful scenery, envious sunsets and an array of contradicting yard signs freckling and dotting every homeowner’s front yard. One very common sign details the purported dangers of wind energy, whether to the scenery, to the housing market or to the community’s health.
President Donald Trump recently made unfounded comments regarding wind energy, which can bolster these feelings of uneasiness in the rural communities of our state and can cause harm to everyone. These comments should be disregarded, as there is no science to back them up.
Trump made these claims when he spoke at the National Republican Congressional Committee dinner on April 2.
“If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations your house just went down 75% in value,” Trump said, according to Daily Mail. “And they say the noise causes cancer … and of course they’re a graveyard for birds.”
Firstly, the housing market is borderline obsolete in the grand scheme of our planet’s health, for what is the housing market when it’s under water? Windmills are beneficial to the environment and would help prevent further destruction of the environment.
Data from the University of Colorado-Boulder details the exponentially rising sea levels from 1993 to 2017. It is an extremely upward trending graph, with the sea level rising by 800 millimeters—or two feet—over that 20-year timeline with no sign of stopping or deviating in trend.
By this logic, in about 20 years, we may see the waves lapping against the doors of Trump’s infamous tower in Manhattan, for this borough of New York City starts at a meager five feet above sea level.
In addition, after pandering to the things Americans hold dearest to their hearts, Trump continues by crediting “they,” an unnamed primary source, who allegedly specializes in cancer research and told him that the noise windmills make can cause cancer.
This repetitive and intentional undermining of science—and the media reporting these findings—by the President is harmful and divisive. By making these claims, he taps into many primal facets of the human condition: fear, and the need to inherently reject the unknown. In a world where there is much needed unity, identity politics and fear can drive people to be more polarized toward one another.
No, windmills are not graveyards for birds. What will be the graveyard to not only birds, but everything, will be the continued ignorance to our climate perpetuated by deniers of basic science.