Almost every other day we hear about some manifestation of NIMBY, where somebody (usually a group of people) don’t want something to be near where they live. And in recent times, I seem to hear quite often about people not wanting wind turbines for electricity generation anywhere near them, because they are noisy, or they spoil the landscape, or whatever.
I don’t want to argue whether the reasons put forward for not wanting electricity generating wind turbines nearby, are valid or not. For all I know they might well be. However the reasons for having wind turbines somewhere seem pretty good (renewable and clean energy, good availability of wind, etc.).
Personally I think wind turbines can be quite beautiful, and whenever I pass by a wind farm, I am always fascinated. However if somebody said that a wind turbine was coming right where I live, I might feel a bit uncomfortable, after all.
What I think is needed, is to make the reasons for having a wind farm near you, more pressing than for not having it. Now the greater good and the environment might be a very good reason, but might not be all that pressing to the average person. However, if people living within a certain distance from it were to get, say for example, free electricity (or substantial discounts on their electricity bill), I think the trend might change, and people might actually bit to have a wind farm near them. Or, even better, if communities were to offer to have a wind farm near them, electricity companies might bid for the site, by offering the most advantageous conditions in terms of subsidized energy. Similar schemes might apply for other forms of renewable energy production, where new sites have to be found.
Wouldn’t something like this give a boost to the adoptions of renewable energies?