Library filed under Tourism from USA

State forests sought for wind farms; Pa. company would lease W.Md. ridges for turbines

A Pennsylvania company is asking the O'Malley administration for leases in two Western Maryland state forests so it can clear up to 400 mountaintop acres to build about 100 wind turbines. The U.S. Wind Force structures would be about 40 stories tall and visible from some of the region's most popular tourist areas, including Deep Creek Lake and the Savage River Reservoir. ...Dan Boone, a former state wildlife biologist who has been fighting wind farms in Western Maryland, said the Savage River and Potomac state forests contain rare old-growth trees and threatened species. "You are talking about taking one of the most spectacular scenic overlooks in Maryland and industrializing it," Boone said of a proposed site on Meadow Mountain in the Savage River forest. "It would be a real tragedy to take state lands and convert them into an industrial theme park for U.S. Wind Force."
6 Dec 2007

Debating the merits of energy from air

THE tiny Greek island of Serifos, a popular tourist destination, depends on its postcard views of sandy beaches, Cycladic homes and sunsets that blend sea and sky into a clean wash of color. So when a mining and energy company floated a plan earlier this year to build 87 industrial wind turbines on more than a third of the island, the Serifos mayor, Angeliki Synodinou, called it her "worst nightmare."..."These are not just one or two turbines spinning majestically in the blue sky and billowing clouds," said Lisa Linowes, executive director of Industrial Wind Action Group, an international advocacy group based in New Hampshire that opposes wind farms.
24 Nov 2007

Land owners oppose wind farms in Gillespie County

Spencer Jones normally spends his day behind a desk in Garland. This weekend he's visiting Fredericksburg and the hill country. "One of the things I wanted to do was see this place," he said. He's referring to Enchanted Rock State Natural Area.The giant granite dome attracts a quarter of a million visitors a year, many hike the trail to the summit. ...Robert Weatherford is the president of Save Our Scenic Hill Country, a group of land owners working to keep wind farms out of the area. "You will literally be able to see them for miles. So we do think that it would destroy the scenic beauty of the Texas hill country," Weatherford said.
15 Nov 2007

Turbulence over turbines at Virginia's first planned wind farm

The ferocity of local opinions against the project has raised questions about Virginia's future as a wind-energy producer, with surrounding counties unsure about opening their mountaintops to investors, too. The debate also comes as entrepreneurs in other states are rushing to erect turbines, take advantage of federal tax credits and create electricity without the emissions linked to global warming.
16 Sep 2007

A new spin on tourism, Can windmills attract travelers? Some say yes, others no.

Gordon Yancey of Martinsburg, N.Y., (about 55 miles northeast of Syracuse) ...owns Flat Rock Inn on Tug Hill, where 195 nearby windmills spin in the breeze, make noise, throw ice from the blades in winter and drive away the snowmobile and ATV riders who are his main customers. The 400-foot-high towers don't attract tourists, but instead lure rubberneckers, Yancey says. "They drive up the road, look at that these things, get out of their cars and take some pictures and then drive away." Yancey says. "They don't stay and spend their money here." Curious people may find the windmills interesting the first time they see them, Yancey says. "But by the second and third time, they realize how truly ugly and distasteful they are...
31 Aug 2007

PSC decision pleases neither side

Major players in the Jordanville Wind Farm controversy were left confused and disappointed following last week's decision by the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) to approve the proposal with stipulations. Landowners, taxpayers and members of the Friends of Renewable Energy (FORE) were outraged with the decision to cut 19 turbines from the proposal, and also voiced concerns with the wording of the decision.
30 Aug 2007

Cape economy needs loyal return visitors

The ski industry is the "lifeblood" of northern New England precisely because it draws visitors eager to appreciate the rural splendor - and spend their money. While Cape Wind supporters often make hasty, anecdotal references to wind farm-related tourism in obscure European enclaves, the Cape's fickle, tourist-based economy relies on loyal return visitors - not curious one-timers. Just a small dip in tourist-related spending would result in thousands of lost jobs and millions of lost dollars.
17 Aug 2007

Wind farm amendment put on hold

The Lycoming County Planning Commission postponed a decision Thursday on whether to recommend an amendment to the county zoning ordinance to significantly change where electricity generating wind turbines may be built. Planning Commission staff had put together an amendment that, if approved by the county commissioners, would allow wind turbines in resource protection and agriculture districts by right and in countryside districts by special exception granted by the county zoning hearing board.
20 Jul 2007

Del. mayors: Wind farm won't hurt resort tourism

Cooper, who said he has only been keeping up with the wind farm proposal through the news, said his concerns lay with the farm's aesthetics. "I think a pristine skyline would be better than one with windmills in it," Cooper said. He did say he understands the wind farm would be far enough off the coast so as it would not be clearly visible. Bluewater Wind had completed a photo realization tour down the coast, where they exhibited rendered photographs of actual, local beach views of the ocean -- with the windmills digitally rendered on the horizon. Based on those photo realizations, the wind farm would be barely visible on clear days, and completely out of sight on hazy ones.
18 Jun 2007

Wind energy stirs strong feelings in Western N.C.

The Blowing Rock Town Council has become the first local government in Northwest North Carolina to ban windmills. The decision by the town, whose economy depends on tourism, comes less than a year after Watauga County became the first county in the state to adopt an ordinance to regulate wind-energy systems. "I think appearance is extremely important in a small town like Blowing Rock," said Town Councilwoman Rita Wiseman. She joined Tuesday's unanimous vote to prohibit wind-energy systems, including residential-scale windmills.
15 Jun 2007

From a Maine region that stopped the turbines

As a tourist who visits the area, I notice what is transparent to most locals, and for me the skyline of Fairhaven is priceless. If the citizens of Fairhaven allow the wind power project to be built at the current proposed location, I believe you will be making a terrible mistake. The town may gain some money in taxes and offset some electrical energy costs, but it will not offset the loss in green space and, more importantly, the beauty of Fairhaven's historic charm.
31 May 2007

Cape Wind and tabloid journalism

In the Williams/Whitcomb world of tabloid journalism, there is no room for thoughtful discussion, for weighing costs against benefits, for understanding that self-interest is at work on both sides of the issue or for any kind of honest discussion. Such thoughts would get in the way of the facile thinking and cynical blather that fills their book and that is now commonplace on TV, radio and the Internet. Do you find yourself bored now that Don Imus and Rosie O'Donnell are off the air? Does the Internet no longer meet your need for trash talk? Then read this book. You won't learn anything substantive from it, but it'll be great entertainment.
31 May 2007

From a Maine region that stopped the turbines

As a tourist who visits the area, I notice what is transparent to most locals, and for me the skyline of Fairhaven is priceless. If the citizens of Fairhaven allow the wind power project to be built at the current proposed location, I believe you will be making a terrible mistake. The town may gain some money in taxes and offset some electrical energy costs, but it will not offset the loss in green space and, more importantly, the beauty of Fairhaven's historic charm.
31 May 2007

Citizens’ group pressures governor to stop wind farm

A citizens' group opposed to the location of massive wind-energy plant in northern Potter County is pressuring Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell to stop the plan. However, with Gov. Rendell pushing for renewable energy projects in Pennsylvania, the "Save God's Country" (SGC) group could face an uphill struggle. An SGC spokesman said the location of wind turbines in the region is at odds with the governor's strong support for the Pennsylvania Wilds tourist promotion plan. "Are hundreds of industrial wind turbines something that will tempt people to visit the Pennsylvania Wilds?" asked Dan Howe. "It seems incongruous, and yet this is what is happening in Potter, Cameron, McKean, Lycoming and Tioga counties, all designated as the Pennsylvania Wilds."
27 Mar 2007

A towering debate

The Jordanville Wind Project’s 68 proposed wind turbines, which would stand nearly 400 feet tall, could have a visual impact on southern Herkimer County and as far away as Cooperstown. A debate is emerging among residents about how the sight of the turbines would affect the beauty of the landscape, land values and tourism. Some think the impact will be small or nonexistent, while others believe there could be many downsides. People visit the Cooperstown area not just for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, other museums and tourist attractions, but also for the scenic views, said Harry Levine of a citizens’ group called Advocates for Springfield. “I think we have to be very careful how we treat this background landscape because it could have a long-term effect on tourism,” Levine said.
26 Feb 2007

Ashe County proposal raises tough issues

Wind power would seem to be a necessary component of any strategy by North Carolina to increase the amount of energy produced here from alternative sources. Put simply, there’s plenty of wind in these parts. The downside is that sections of the state where wind currents are strongest and most consistent also happen to be ones that are heavily dependent on tourism and where there is an understandable priority on protecting natural views. That holds for the coast, and it holds for the mountains. The issue of whether and how to take advantage of mountain winds now is before the state Utilities Commission. The commission yesterday held a hearing focused on a proposed Ashe County “wind farm” — 25 or so giant turbines that would be built near Creston in the state’s far northwest. It is easy to see why the project has stirred local opposition in an area where vacation-home development is an economic mainstay.
14 Feb 2007

The Wind Power Debate Continues to Produce Crosswinds of Controversy

From Barton, Vermont, to the German border with Denmark and from the shores of Lake Huron, to the Romney Marches of southern England, wind power advocates are fighting crosswinds from local residents. In Barton in mid-January, a referendum overwhelmingly rejected the wind power turbines that were planned near this upper Vermont community. ...In Germany, where one-third of the world's current wind power is generated, doubters have provoked a loud debate. The company that owns the grid that includes nearly half the wind-farms in Germany reported its wind farms generated only 11 percent of their capacity. The company said the winds vary so much the wind farm had to be backed 80 percent by the conventional power grid.
27 Jan 2007

The Wind Power Debate Continues to Produce Crosswinds of Controversy

From Barton, Vermont, to the German border with Denmark and from the shores of Lake Huron, to the Romney Marches of southern England, wind power advocates are fighting crosswinds from local residents. In Barton in mid-January, a referendum overwhelmingly rejected the wind power turbines that were planned near this upper Vermont community. ...In Germany, where one-third of the world's current wind power is generated, doubters have provoked a loud debate. The company that owns the grid that includes nearly half the wind-farms in Germany reported its wind farms generated only 11 percent of their capacity. The company said the winds vary so much the wind farm had to be backed 80 percent by the conventional power grid.
27 Jan 2007

Somerset officials say windmills generate tourism

Tourism brochures tout the region’s mountains, lakes, ski slopes and trails. But some officials think those promotional guides should start including windmill sites. While the turbines popping up on the Cambria-Somerset horizon may not have the charm of the backyard devices among the tulip fields of Holland, these structures already are playing a role in drawing tourists to Somerset County. Some believe the windmills could do a lot more than generate power. “It’s how you sell it and how you market yourself,” said Erik Foley, director of the Renewable Energy Center at St. Francis University. “We could become the clean energy capital of the world.”
24 Dec 2006

http://www.windaction.org/posts?location=USA&p=3&topic=Tourism
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