Home
Wind home


On this page...

Introduction
Disregard for fact
Failure to learn from mistakes
The 'About' page of STT
Libellous content
How low can they go?
Tim Flannery
Miranda on Stop These Things
Wind industry's lies dissected
Peer-reviewed health reports?
Rallies
Wind turbine failures
A pathetic personal attack
Dangerous Dave Clarke
Index

Some facts about Stop These Things

One of the Wind Power Ethics pages*

There are a number of anti-wind power Net sites in Australia and elsewhere. Stop These Things (STT) is typical of these in trying to discredit wind power by making false or misleading claims and ignoring the facts.

Both sides of the wind debate accuse the other side of lying; how do you know which side is telling the truth? One good indication is that many of the anti-wind people hide behind anonymity; any claim that comes from a person unwilling to put his name to his statements should be treated with contempt. STT is very much in this group.

Who are they?
Who are they?
So they say. But who are they?

The site specialises in name-calling, abuse and ad hominem (personal) attacks, but the name of the person or people behind the STT site is kept secret. Readers should ask why this is. If a person is writing the truth (as I try to, to the best of my ability) why would he not be willing to give his name? On the other hand, if a person is writing lies and abuse he has a very good reason to hide his identity.

Readers should not expect to see science, reasoned argument or supporting evidence on the STT site. (I could not force myself to read the whole STT site, but I would hazard a guess that there is not a single reference to a scientific article published in a respectable peer-reviewed journal on the whole site.)

Written 2013/01/06, modified 2017/01/14 – Google search Ramblings
Contact: email daveclarkecb@yahoo.com (David Clarke – Dangerous Dave, Scourge of the Wind Trolls)
Wind home




Little good can be done by lying, little harm by telling the truth.

Wind energy opposition

About these pages


Introduction

 

Attack of May 2013

A piece was published in STT on 2013/05/13 and titled '"Dangerous" Dave Clarke'. Amongst a lot of childish name-calling and abuse the piece discussed the exposure that I have given on these pages to the false claims made by anti-wind power people. I believe that all I have written is true, can be substantiated and is in the public interest.

It's good to know, though, that STT thinks that I am dangerous to the misinformation campaign of the anti-wind power lobby.

 

Wind turbines cannot honestly be called inefficient

David Libby wrote a piece titled Absurdly Inefficient on the Grubby Little Secrets page, dated 2012/12/30.

Mr Libby went to quite a bit of trouble to calculate the fraction of the energy available in the wind that is converted into electricity in the case of a particular turbine. He concluded that while the turbine produced 2MW of electricity there was 8.5MW available from the wind. Mr Libby felt that this rate of "efficiency", 24%, justified calling the wind turbine "absurdly inefficient", even though it is very similar to the efficiency of a coal-fired power station and far better than the 15% efficiency we get from our cars if you calculate the energy available in the fuel and the power delivered to the wheels.

 

Grasping at straws

The Texas study referred to in the main text at the left is typical of how many anti-wind power activists will point to an obscure study and twist its results to try to discredit wind power.
 

Poorly informed

On 2013/05/16 STT wrote about "the fight to keep Yorke Peninsula turbine free". For a person who sets himself up as an expert on wind power it is notable that he doesn't know there has been a 55-turbine wind farm on Yorke Peninsula since 2005!
Some wind farm opponents simply don't like wind turbines while others are financially involved in the fossil fuel and mining industries and don't want to see renewable energy replacing fossil fuel-fired power stations. All, it would seem, don't much care about what climate change and ocean acidification will do to the planet if we fail to adopt renewable energy or about the people killed or made ill by air pollution from the coal-fired power stations that have been and will continue to be shut down as more wind farms are built.

There are problems with wind power, I have written about them on a dedicated page. Most of my statements refuting claims made by Stop These Things on this page refer, by links, to fuller explanations and supporting evidence elsewhere on these pages.

The first time I took an interest in Stop These Things was when I came across a page titled "Grubby Little Secrets". The page starts by claiming that wind turbines are inefficient They are not, of course; as I have explained elsewhere on this site. (More wind power was installed world-wide in 2012 than in any previous year; would the world be taking to wind power like this if wind farms were somehow inefficient or ineffective? Update, 2015/02/19; in Europe in 2014 more than twice as much wind power was installed than coal and gas combined.)

The same page claimed that wind turbines have a "traumatic impact on local communities". Again, this is not true, as I have explained elsewhere; where there is trauma it has mainly been brought about by the fear and misunderstanding coming from the lies and distortions such as those published in Stop These Things.

The Grubby Little Secrets page went on to talk about environmental damage in China due to the mining of rare earth minerals. I believe it is true that there has been very serious environmental damage due to rare earth mining in China, but wind turbines are by no means the only use for rare earth minerals; they have become very widely used in the modern world.

Another lie on the Grubby Little Secrets page was the allegation that wind farms in Texas are contributing to global warming. The justification for this was a study of satellite data showing slightly higher surface temperatures following wind farm construction in Texas. It does seem that the surface temperature rose slightly near the wind farms. This is not surprising because the wind farms would reduce the wind speed at the surface during the day and that would allow the sun to heat the land slightly more. Also, at night, the turbulence produced by the wind turbines could disturb the layer of cool air that would otherwise form at very low levels at night. What is most important, and what was ignored by Stop These Things, is that there would be no net increase in warming. Yes, the local soil surface was getting a little warmer, but the wind would also be taking less heat away from the area; one would counteract the other; there would be no net increase in heating generally. There is more on this study elsewhere.

The selective use of evidence and faulty logic discussed above is typical of anti-wind power propagandists. They start with the mind-set that "wind power is bad" and look for any, no matter how shaky, 'evidence' that they feel supports their premise.

Perhaps the writers of Stop These Things would prefer coal-fired power?
Biejing smog
Biejing people who have to live with smog, much of which comes from the burning of coal, are reminded what a clear sky looks like by a big screen.
Image credit: Feng li/Getty Images

 
Top
Wind home
Index





Disregard for fact

 
Wind farm performance
Wind farm performance
Graphic credit Wind Farm Performance
This single item shows the callous disregard that the author of Stop These Things has for the truth.

Posted under 'The "Great Oz"' by STT on 2013/05/26, was this "... the fact that the average windfarm only produces power about 25% of the time".

That this is quite false is shown by the average South Eastern Australian wind farm having a capacity factor of 35%. That is to say, a typical 3MW wind turbine will, on average over a long period, generate about 1MW. Quite obviously, since there is a significant amount of time when it is running at less than full power, it must produce power much more than 25% of the time to achieve an average of 35% of its installed capacity.

It could be that STT was thinking of capacity factor when he wrote about the proportion of the time that wind farms generate power; but then too he was blatantly misrepresenting the fact.

The graph on the right above, which was from the data of the most recent full day available at the time of writing, shows that of the 27 wind farms logged by the Wind Farm Performance site, most were generating most of the day. If you look at a graph for almost any day on Wind Farm Performance you will see a similar result; some days there will be more generation than others, but most wind farms generate some power most of the time.



STT fails to learn from his mistakes and repeats the same lies even after those lies have been exposed

 
Wind farm generation 2014/01/16
Wind farm generation 2014/01/16
This was in the height of the record-breaking heatwave
Graph credit – Wind Farm Performance
After having written on 2013/05/26 that "the average windfarm only produces power about 25% of the time" and being shown the facts, (above) STT repeated much the same claim on 2014/01/19:
"It is a meteorological and physical fact that the wind will be insufficient to operate industrial wind turbines around 70% of the time. And, even if there is sufficient wind to operate, giant fans simply can't stand the Australian heat."
One need only look at the graphs of wind farm generation on Wind Farm Performace (WFP) on almost any day at all to see the most wind farms are generating power most of the time.

The same source will show that the second claim, that the turbines can't stand the Australian heat, is similarly quite false. See WFP, 2014/01/16 (or the graphs on the right). This was the day during the recent record breaking heatwave in which Melbourne recorded its highest January temperature, 43.9°. Again, most wind farms were generating at quite a substantial rate most of the day and they achieved an average capacity factor of at least 35% for the day, as can plainly be seen from the graph.

 
Top
Wind home
Index





The 'About' page of Stop These Things

A number of statements here deserve mention:
 

Justification of statements

Notice that the writer of STT often does not justify his statements. I can sympathise with him on that; finding data and research that justifies one's statements can be a lot of work; I have read and written reams of stuff in order to justify my statements. It's a lot easier just to write something and hope that someone will believe it, as Mr STT does.

Evidence

Supporting arguments and evidence for most of my statements on this page can be found by following the links provided on this page. Most of the links connect to other pages of mine. Should you want to go direct to original and independent sources go to my page Wind Links, or use this link for matters concerning health and wind turbines, or this for matters concerning wind tubines and noise.
STT "This post explains who we are"

Who is he?, or who are they? The post does not tell us. No names are given. The reader should ask why he or they are not willing to give their names? It seems obvious that the reason is that they are telling lies and they don't want to be held to account.

STT "We are surprised and alarmed by how the Green movement is now in bed with big industry."

This may be how they perceive the situation, but it is not the fact. Some parts of big industry are involved in building wind farms – there is money in it; some of big industry are also trying to minimise the adoption of renewable energy – there is more money in fossil fuels. The Green movement wants to reduce greenhouse gas production and slow climate change and ocean acidification. Neither big business nor the Green movement generally share the irrational fear or hatred of wind power that we see in the writers of Stop These Things.

STT "We are dismayed that people have been forced from their homes or have been made unwell by a government-sanctioned, tax-payer funded industry."

There are several falsehoods here:
 
Emissions intensity on the Australian NEM
Emissions intensity
Graph credit – Professor Mike Sandiford, University of Melbourne; data from the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO)
STT "We are not convinced at the efficacy or efficiency of wind energy."

By efficacy Stop These Things (STT) is probably referring to greenhouse gas abatement; wind turbines certainly do replace fossil-fuel generated electricity and that certainly results in less greenhouse gas production (see the graph on the right). I have discussed the efficiency of wind energy above and in more depth elsewhere on this site; there is no valid reason for claiming that they are inefficient.

STT "We are not collectively climate-change 'deniers'. We are not NIMBYs."

A comment further down the page shows that at least some of their number are climate change deniers. The anti-wind power movement have not shown any justifiable reason for opposing wind power development other than personal dislike; I leave it to the reader to decide whether this constitutes NIMBYism. STT and like-minded people should be ashamed of themselves for slowing the replacement of killer coal-fired power stations with clean, environmentally friendly, renewable energy. If STT accept the reality of anthropogenic climate change (ACC, man-made climate change) then, again, they should be ashamed of themselves for standing in the way of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

STT "We are appalled by how wind industry supporters dismiss victims, ridicule those who have different opinions and vilify those who are opposed to industrial wind power generation."

  • There are few genuine victims; as discussed elsewhere.
  • Ridicule is defined as 'Subject to mockery and derision'.
    Ridiculous is defined as 'Deserving or inspiring ridicule'.
    Ridiculous opinions, if held privately are fine. When publicly thrust onto other people as the truth, they deserve ridicule.
  • Vilify is defined as 'Speaking or writing about in an abusively disparaging manner'.
    I have seen little that could be called abusive in what has been written in response to the anti-wind power lobby; I have seen abuse from the anti-wind lobby, and have received it myself.

STT "We are appalled by the dishonesty of the wind industry, its supporters and those who operate within it."

This is often repeated by opponents of renewable wind power, they rarely give convincing or specific examples of the claimed dishonesty. This page shows that they should look to their own honesty. If any reader can point out something that I have written dishonestly, and can show good evidence for that claim, I'll be pleased to know about it; my email address is at the top of this page. (See Wind industry's lies dissected.)





Libellous content

One of the pages of Stop These Things carried the following libellous statement:
"Simon Chapman is the professor of public health at the university [of Sydney]. He has conducted a relentless campaign to vilify people who claim living near turbines is affecting their health."
The author's name was given as 'stopthesethings' and the page was dated January 5, 2013. (I noticed it on 2013/01/06.)

Simon Chapman has not been vilifying people who claim illnesses from wind turbines; rather he has been pointing out that wind turbines are not the cause of any illnesses. This false claim would legally constitute libel.

 
Top
Wind home
Index





How low can they go?

 
Comment by STT
STT comment
Stop These Things showed how low they can go very well in a piece titled More propaganda from Herr Marsh of the Stasi. It contained libellous statements, conspiracy theory, sarcasm and name-calling, but nothing of any value.

The STT article from which the comment on the right was taken, titled 'Alan Jones and Sarah Laurie go on the attack', also contained the following:

Sarah's been copping a wind industry funded attack from "Green" goons like Senator "Die Nasty" in the last few weeks...
The writer of STT often uses similar insulting language and baseless claims.

Alan Jones is a climate change denying radio 'shock jock' and is one of the heros of STT.
Sarah Laurie is working at spreading the unfounded belief that wind turbines within ten kilometres make people sick.






Personal attack on Tim Flannery

On 2013/03/28 Stop These Things added a piece abusing Tim Flannery.

Typically STT wrote an ad hominem attack on Tim, accusing him of 'cash for comment' and even of being 'a fool'. No matter how much one might dislike Tim Flannery (I am one of his many admirers), to call him a fool is obviously ridiculous, the books he has written are anything but the works of a fool. As usual STT produced no valid evidence justifying his attack on Tim Flannery's remarks.

Most of what STT wrote on the page was a personal attack on Mr Flannery. But he had the gall to also say that "Simon Holmes a Court has a reputation for personally attacking anybody critical of his two-turbine money machine" (the community owned wind farm at Hepburn, Victoria).

When it comes to personal attacks STT, you are the greatest!

 
Top
Wind home
Index





Miranda on Stop These Things

Miranda is a column of the Weekly Times Now. On 2013/10/16 the column was about Neil Barrett's videos regarding local people's views of the Waubra Wind Farm. Neil's videos are on the VicWind site.

Apparently when the writer of Miranda Googled 'Neil Barrett video', or similar she first found Stop These Things. Miranda wrote...

"If tone is anything to go by, VicWind wins hands down ahead of STT for civility and transparency. It names the people behind the site, includes their pictures and brief biographies as well as a blog and the videos mentioned above and a phone number for people to contact. There is no such transparency on the other site.

It does not name the creators or writers of the website, merely declaring themselves "a kitchen table of concerned citizens". Nor does it include biographies or a phone number to contact.

Why not?

Lo and behold if that site didn't feature farmers and neighbours talking about how the wind farms had made their lives unbearable in some way or another and how they'd upset their chooks.

Its tone is angry and bitter and sarcastic."
 
Top
Wind home
Index





"Wind industry's lies dissected"

 

Web of trust

Web of Trust (WOT) is a site where users of the Internet can rate Net sites for trustworthiness. In addition to providing a rating users can leave comments about any site.

The anonymous writter of STT has left a comment on WOT accusing these pages (ramblingsdc.net) of being a "hate" site. Where is there justification on these pages for this accusation? Can the reader point out where this site promotes hatred?

WOT give Ramblings a green (safe, reliable) rating and gives STT a red (untrustworthy) rating.

This was the headline of an imaginative posting in Stop These Things.

In their 'About' page Stop These Things say "We are appalled by the dishonesty of the wind industry, its supporters and those who operate within it." This sort of statement is often made by wind power opponents, but they rarely provide any evidence of said lying.

On 2013/03/29 STT published a piece titled "The wind industry's lies dissected", by (the typically annonymous) 'special correspondent'.

And what were the big wind industry lies that were exposed? Well, actually there was only one alleged lie involved and that was the imaginary claim that wind energy can provide base load power.

Mr STT, when has a representative of the wind industry ever claimed that wind can provide base load power? Mr STT, who is lying here?

 
Top
Wind home
Index





 
This section added 2015/02/24

Peer-reviewed health reports?

Stop These Things has a page that claims to provide links to peer-reviewed science papers showing convincing evidence that wind turbines harm people's health.

If the reader looks up the STT page he or she will note that many (or most) of the so-called peer-reviewed articles were published in a journal called the Bulletin of Science Technology and Society (BSTS). How credible is this journal? In the science publishing world this is measured by Impact Factor. What is the Impact Factor of BSTS? Zero. (See ResearchGate.)

More on the credibility of BSTS can be read here.

Other of the references on the STT page related to annoyance more than health. I don't think anyone is claiming that wind turbines don't annoy anybody. People who start with negative perceptions of wind turbines are usually the ones who are annoyed by them, those who have positive outlooks on wind power (me for one) find the sound quite pleasant. Of course people who start off with very negative views are even alloyed by the site of wind turbines.

Yet other references on the STT page merely discussed the sound produced by wind turbines.

 
Top
Wind home
Index





Rallies

 
The failed anti-wind rally
Alan Jones rally
The anonymous writer of Stop These Things got together with climate science denying shock jock Alan Jones to hold an anti-wind power rally in Canberra on 2013/06/18.

With much less time to prepare, a group of pro-renewable people organised a much more successful pro-wind, pro-renewables rally for the same time and the other side of Lake Burley-Griffin.

The Jones-STT rally 'crowd' is shown in the photo at the right. As can be seen, a large proportion of those who attended were from the media. A part of the crowd at the pro-renewables rally, estimated at from 500 to 1000, is in the photo below.

On the day, there were far more people at the pro-renewable rally than at the anti-wind rally.

Photos credit Renew Economy, also see Weekly Times Now.

 
The highly successful and well attended pro-renewables rally
Pro-renewables rally

 
Top
Wind home
Index





Wind turbine failures

 
Power transmission line downed due to the storms of September 2016
Transmission lines down
The photo was taken near Blyth, Mid-North South Australia on 2016/10/06.
On 2017/01/10 STT published a piece headlined "Wind Farm Mass Attack: Wind Turbines Collapsing and Combusting Around the World". It went on:
"The number of cases involving turbines collapsing, self immolating or throwing their blades to the four winds (aka "component liberation") has become so common..."
Of the several hundred thousand wind turbines around the world, how many did STT find had 'collapsed or cumbusted'? Hundreds? thousands? No, they discussed four.

In Australia wind turbines have clocked up about 6000 turbine-years of operation. How many have 'collapsed or cumbusted'? None have collapsed, two have caught fire. Another one caught fire during construction.

It seems that not a single wind turbine was damaged in the exceptional storms of late September and late December 2016 (had there been any, the media would have made sure that everyone knew about it; a damaged wind turbine is highly conspicuous – impossible to hide). Those same storms flattened sections of three out of the four main power transmission lines that passed through the area where most of South Australia's wind turbines are. They blew down more trees than any other storm in living memory: at least in the tens of thousands, if not in the hundreds of thousands. All of South Australia's power grid was knocked out for four hours with the September storm, and over a hundred thousand homes were without power, some for up to four days, with the December storm, but not one wind turbine of the more than 400 in the region was damaged!

 
Top
Wind home
Index





A pathetic personal attack

 

Why not respond directly?

If any readers are wondering why I do not respond directly by making a comment on the STT Net site – I have done so, but my comments were not posted.

Aesthetic objections are valid objections

On the top of this page I gave a link to valid problems with wind power. Aesthetics is one of the problems I have listed.

I am a NIMBY!

I'll beat Mr STT to the punch. The statement on the left about my wife and I not putting a tall TV tower in our back yard proves that we are NIMBYs – of a sort. The term NIMBY more usually applies to people who say that something is generally good, so long as it is somewhere else. In the case of wind power it is very hard to see where that somewhere else might be; if the cost is not to increase greatly.

Who is a hypocrite?

Mr STT relies on people like me giving our real names so that he can try to 'dig up dirt' on them, while he hides his identity.
The writer of Stop These Things has honoured me with a page that he is calling The J. Edgar Hoover of Crystal Brook. In this page he calls me a 'closet NIMBY' and a hypocrite because I wrote a submission objecting to a communications tower being built in Crystal Brook. As can be seen if one follows the link given in the STT page, what I wrote was:
"I believe the antennas would be better placed outside Crystal Brook, perhaps on top of Cemetery Hill, because that would provide a better coverage of the district and tall towers do not improve the appearance of a town."
If this is the worst dirt Mr STT can dig up on me I will not loose any sleep over it.

Mr STT seems to like 'ad hominem' arguments. They are defined in The Skeptics Guide's "Logical Fallacies" page as any argument "that attempts to counter another's claims or conclusions by attacking the person, rather than addressing the argument itself". Mr STT plainly feels that he can't counter my arguments on wind power, so he attacks me.

Anticipating future ad hominem attacks, I will go on to say that my wife and I have lived in Crystal Brook for 35 years and while most people in the town have put up tall TV towers, we have not. We do not like the look of them. I like the look of wind turbines but I have always held that people have a perfect right to not like them; it is the lies about wind power and the failure to consider the need to change to renewable energy that I object to.

Getting back to STT, one wonders why Mr STT hides his own identity? Does he have skeletons in his own closet? Or is it that he is afraid that someone will seek justice and take him to court for his libellous statements? It takes some level of courage, and some confidence in the veracity of your claims, to put your name to your writing in the wind power debate.






Dangerous Dave Clarke – Scourge of Wind Trolls

STT called me Dangerous Dave Clarke. Perhaps I'll adopt the name, and add to it.

Synonyms of scourge are: bane, blight, downfall, ruin, torment and woe.

People who spread misinformation about wind power can expect me to expose their lies.






Index

A pathetic personal attack
'About' page of Stop These Things
Dangerous Dave Clarke
Disregard for fact
Failure to learn from mistakes
Libellous content
How low can they go?
Introduction
Miranda on Stop These Things
Peer-reviewed health reports?
Rallies
Tim Flannery
Top
Web of trust
Wind industry's lies dissected
Wind turbine failures


Home
Wind home
Top
Wind home
Top