New U.S. study be economist shows no property value loss near turbines

One of the things that rankles the corporate wind development lobby is the fact that property values are negatively affected for properties near wind power generation projects. This is proveable. And it is numbers on a page, not stories which can then be dismissed with the industry’s usual response which is, people are stressed, they don’t like change, they’re old and don’t understand that we need to save the environment, etc. etc. etc.
   The Huffington Post released this story on Christmas Eve, a report of a new study done by an assistant professor at Rhode Island University, which apparently shows that there is no loss of value. Or, there is but it is so small that you can put it down to “margin of error.” The study, done by a PhD in economics, was funded by the state’s department of energy. Rhode Island, as you may be aware, is looking at a massive offshore wind power development.
    We will be bringing you analysis of this study when we have commentary on the full paper. However, there are clues already to the complete meaninglessness of the study. The authors themselves report:

“One challenge in estimating the effects of wind turbines on housing prices is that most wind
turbines were built within the past few years, and there are relatively few property
sales in the immediate vicinity of wind turbines (or for that matter, at other specific locations) in such a short time period. We expect that the precision of estimates will increase over time, as more transactions occur. Hence, we recommend that that the analysis be repeated in a few years when a more robust data set with additional property transactions become available.”

 In other words, no sales. Hard to measure what didn’t happen.

Here is the news story.

Wind Turbines Don’t Have Negative Effect On Property Values, Study Finds

12/24/13 08:23 AM ET EST


SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (AP) — A University of Rhode Island study has found that wind turbine construction and operation doesn’t appear to have a negative effect on the property values of nearby homes.
Economics professor Corey Lang determined that proximity to a turbine has no statistical effect on property values after analyzing sales prices of 48,000 homes from the last 15 years. He compared homes near one of the state’s 12 turbines and homes far from them.
He found the turbines may cause a drop in property values of 0.4 percent for homes within half a mile of the structure, well within the study’s margin of error.
Lang presented his findings last week. The Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources funded his research.
He says a similar study is underway in Massachusetts.

More information on Corey Lang here from the university website:

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