Library filed under Impact on Landscape from Vermont
I spotted one potential straw in the wind in the hearing officer's decison: She rejected GMP's assertion that the temporary towers would have no "adverse" aesthetic impact. "Given the facts of this case, it would be difficult to find that the three proposed towers do not have an adverse effect on the aesthetics of the area," she wrote. The mountains and ridgelines in the Lowell area are classic Vermont forested mountaintops with little or no sign of man's hand.
In his letter dated Dec. 22, 2009 Vermont Fish and Wildlife community ecologist Eric Sorenson details why the Vermont Community Wind Farm proposed for western Vermont would have "an undue adverse effect" on the area. The project could have as many as 45 wind turbines sited along several ridgelines.
My husband and I spent the holiday weekend in the NEK. We love the unique beauty and serenity present only in the NEK. This is the year we planned to purchase our dream home in Albany to spend our retirement years living in this unspoiled part of the world. Sadly, our dreams were shattered. Shortly after finding our dream home, our realtor informed us about the proposed Lowell wind development on the Lowell ridge lines.
In his letter to the editor on Nov. 6, Jeff Wennberg painted a ridiculously benign picture of the impact on the mountains of Ira if construction of about 40 wind turbines takes place there. For instance, Jeff states, "Anyone who has seen a completed wind farm on forested land knows that these projects follow the contours of the terrain." He cites the Lempster wind turbine site as an example. ...The blasting and construction of wide service roads and tower base areas there have changed the contours of the land so drastically that, when I now stand in the area of this project, I have a hard time imagining what the terrain looked like before.
Thank you to Art Kruegger for raising the question about whether big wind turbines built on Vermont's mountaintops will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. That is a question Vermonters for a Clean Environment has been attempting to answer for seven months, and we are still looking for answers.
Sitting shoulder to shoulder in the portrait room at the ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center, community members listened intently to panelists before engaging in a somewhat heated debate about windmills and nature. Lights were dimmed as images emerged of Don Quixote's jousting windmills and of dead bats to illustrate the wind-energy debate. The presentation, titled "Windmills: Viewed through the lens of art, science, and animal impact" included panelists Patrick Marold, Thomas Tailer and Scott Darling in this culminating event of a three-part series, "The Energy Project Vermont," a partnership between ECHO and Burlington City Arts with the support of University of Vermont.
An environmental court judge has dealt a setback to a wind energy developer that wants to build a project in the Northeast Kingdom. The judge has set a trial for December to hear arguments about whether the project complies with Vermont's water quality regulations. Parts of Judge Merideth Wright's ruling went in favor of First Wind, the company that wants to put the 16 turbines on a ridgeline in Sheffield. But when the judge focused on how the project will affect the water quality of high elevation streams, she handed the opponents a victory.
It is also clear that to be green we do not have to destroy our views, our quality of life and the very character of Vermont that makes it special. VCWF's project would require significant deforestation, habitat loss, noise pollution, losses in property values, damage views both day and night, require mountaintop blasting, and decrease quality of life for the area.
The low price of electricity and abundance of it right now are hurting renewables, and there is essentially no market for new generation. He also said he doesn't expect that to change for several years. So why are we willing to obliterate our mountains and fill our night sky with flashing red lights for something we may not even need?
I find it ironic that the mountains chosen by the Rutland Herald to exemplify our state's beauty are the same mountains that will be visually spoiled by the Vermont Community Wind Farm's proposed plan to erect 45 400- to 500-foot wind towers. Along with the turbines come the 36-foot-wide access roads cut into the mountains, the removal of the top of the mountain for footings and the power grid lines.
One hundred people crammed into Ira town hall Tuesday night to meet with the developers of the Vermont Community Wind Farm. Some in the crowd already had their mind made up, and would not support the project no matter what. A majority of residents are relatively supportive of the concept of wind power, but have issues with the location and magnitude of the proposed project.
Officials from Vermont Community Wind have organized a bus trip to a wind farm in New Hampshire to try and build support for a large scale wind farm they're proposing in and around the Rutland County town of Ira. Company officials say about 35 residents from the area will travel to Lempster, New Hampshire, on Saturday where a 24-megawatt wind farm has recently been built.
More than 150 people gathered tonight in Georgia to debate a proposed five-turbine wind farm on Georgia Mountain. Some 30 speakers and the broader audience seemed split on the project as they participated in a hearing before the state Public Service Board, which would have to approve the development for it to proceed.
The neighbors gathered in Dan and Tina FitzGerald's kitchen had a list of grievances about five wind turbines proposed for the mountain in his backyard. The list began with this: A fear their voices will not be listened to. "We feel there is a tremendous amount of money stacked up against us," said Darlene Ross, who would have a view of the turbines from her home on Arrowhead Lake.
Although the Public Service Board granted the Deerfield Wind Project a certificate of public good, there remains a lot of work ahead. Now the wind project must obtain approval from federal and state agencies, and officials say it may be another year before construction of the wind turbines can commence. ...According to U.S. Forest Service supervisor Meg Mitchell, the forest service is reviewing the PSB decision. Mitchell said the forest service is also looking at submitted comments from the draft environmental impact statement.
Opposition is organizing against a proposed wind project in Ira, a small hilly town southwest of Rutland, with a handful of residents from Ira and surrounding towns meeting last week to discuss their concerns. A company called Vermont Community Wind Farm has proposed putting as many as 60 wind turbines in and around the town of 460 people.
The Vermont Public Service Board has issued a certificate of public good for the Deerfield Wind Project, but the work must still be approved by the U.S. Forest Service. "They've cleared a major hurdle, but there's still a good bit of the race left to run," Meg Mitchell, supervisor of the Green Mountain National Forest, said Tuesday.
Plans for a wind farm atop Georgia Mountain are coming together rapidly and the project-which would establish three to five turbines along the ridge-could be operational as soon as 2011, said consultants for the Georgia Mountain Community Wind LLC. The consultants testified before the Milton Planning Commission on March 17, as part of the project's permitting process.
Wind energy advocates want the Douglas administration to lift its ban on large-scale wind projects on state-owned land. The advocates say Vermont needs to explore all options as it looks for new energy resources. But Governor Jim Douglas remains opposed to the idea VPR's John Dillon reports:
The Vermont Public Service Board has denied Ridge Protectors Inc.'s request for discovery and hearings on the certificate of public good being issued for a wind generation facility in Sheffield. ...The case relates to the Aug. 8, 2007, Public Service Board's issuance of a certificate of public good which granted conditional approval of a wind generation facility by Vermont Wind.