Herkimer County residents have filed suit against Iberdrola, a multi-billion euro Spanish corporation.
The suit pertains to the installation of 37 industrial wind-turbines in a rural residential area with U.S. taxpayer subsidies. It is alleged, among other things, that the towers to be installed were smaller and that they would not produce noise levels above 50 decibels. Instead, Iberdrola installed turbines over 100 feet taller than planned, topping out at 476 feet in height, essentially a 50-story building, spinning at over 100 mph with noise levels that have exceeded 72db. Experts say that noise levels above 35db are considered harmful and that wind turbines of this size should never be placed in such proximity to people’s homes. It is also alleged that insufficient testing and planning was performed on the site before the installation of the turbines. As a result, property values have significantly decreased for the residents, some of which were forced to abandon their homes since they could not be sold. Furthermore, residents’ quality of life has been significantly impacted and some have developed health concerns. The turbines have also caused interference to internet, television and cell phone usage, among other issues. It is also believed that the turbines are running at a low capacity, meaning there is little value to the public by means of energy production, all to the tune of the developer receiving $54 million dollars in tax subsidies and other financial benefits. Another concern, among many, is the damage to the community when the turbines become old and are no longer functioning thereby creating a vast industrial junkyard without redress.
The residents of this community have enlisted the help of the court system to obtain justice. Attorneys Jeff D. DeFrancisco, Esq., and Melody D. Scalfone, Esq., have partnered together on this matter and have filed a Summons and Complaint (PDF) in the Supreme Court of New York, Albany County, against Defendant Iberdrola and several other companies on behalf of more than 60 plaintiffs residing in the Herkimer County, NY area.