While wind power is now considered both technologically mature and economically feasible, it faces bitter opposition from local communities on the grounds of visual pollution. The role that visual impact analyses play in policy debates about the siting of wind energy facilities is critically examined. The production of viewshed simulations and their reception by members of diverse publics are examined in the context of the Cape Wind project in the United States. The official public comments record for this project is used to explore how viewshed controversies challenge administrative politics. Some ways in which visual impact assessments can better register cultural rationality and enroll civic epistemologies are suggested.