Library from Vermont
Even at the rare moments when rising wind corresponds to rising demand, backup sources still have to be ramped up as "spinning standby" because the wind may drop out at any moment. This is critical: Wind does not significantly displace other sources of electricity
The Windham Regional Commission asked the District Environmental Commission if the proposed commercial wind energy development on Glebe Mountain requires an an Act 250 amendment as well as a permit under Section 248 (30 V.S.A Section 248). Act 250 is designed to protect Vermont's ridgelines above 2500'. Section 248 authorizes the Public Service Board to issue 'Certificates of Public Good' for electricity generating projects. The District Environmental Commission concluded that construction of the wind measurement towers and the proposed wind energy project represent material and substantial changes to existing Act 250 permits and thus require an amendment.
In promising an examination of "the most important issues in the debate" about industrial wind power, Caroline Kettlewell proceeded to deliver instead an unbalanced promotion for the wind industry.
Bravo. Finally, a declarative statement on wind energy after months of murky confusion. Finally, a break in the clouds that have shrouded an issue that is critical to all Vermonters but has been driven largely by wind developers and advocates. Taken at face value, Gov. Jim Douglas is saying "No" to big wind.
Similar grassroots activism is taking root in Sheffield and neighboring villages, where residents call themselves the Ridge Protectors and are circulating petitions against the project and erecting "Save our ridgeline" signs along the roadsides.
It suggests a welcoming atmosphere for the industrial wind developers who are gauging the state's appetite for wind towers on our ridgelines. That's not the intent of the proclamation, according to Jason Gibbs, the governor's spokesman. It's about promoting renewable energy in general, and small wind power projects specifically -- on "a Vermont scale."
Eric Rosenbloom, a resident of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom, addresses why wind power does not live up to advocates' claims, why its impact on the environment and people's lives is far from benign and how money invested in wind energy could be better spent.
The Bennington Banner (editorial, Sept. 8) appears to think that those who oppose industrial wind power plants on the ridgelines prefer nuclear radiation, coal smoke, and mercury poisoning. They have created a paper tiger and missed the real argument.
Culminating three years of study, the Planning Commission of Londonderry (VT) revised Londonderry's Town Plan to prohibit industrial wind turbines on Glebe Mountain. The revised Town Plan was submitted to the Londonderry Select Board on August 30, 2005 and approved by the Select Board on October 5, 2005. Included here are selected themes and extracts from Londonderry's Town Plan.
The drive to develop our ridgelines is part of the same industrial arrogance, the same corporate piracy, that drives the war and poverty machine Newton calls attention to.
It's not easy to strike a balance, and that's where the friction arises. In Vermont, it is playing out as the U.S. Forest Service is faced with delivering a new management plan for the Green Mountain National Forest, a 400,000-acre parcel of public land in central and southern Vermont.
Every decision must be guided by one overriding principle -- to safeguard the uniqueness that is Vermont.
I have endured the industrial droning for close to ten years, with the added arrhythmic clunk of the gears from the turning mechanisms. This is described as a “barely noticeable” sound. I beg to differ. Due to this industrial noise pollution, I can no longer bring pets to the property, because the droning disorients them in the woods. The impact to the wildlife must be even more severe, despite the claims of the power company’s ‘consultants’. Regardless, my family’s enjoyment of the quiet of the woods is severely diminished.
Speak out for your ridge lines and public land now before the opportunity passes and the Green Mountains become industrial wind parks.
The proponents of this project claim that wind power is an effective and cost-efficient way to produce renewable, emission free energy. Our research has convinced us that this claim is false.
Wind power is an idea that is appealing to the imagination. It sounds like a "free" source of energy that would be non-polluting and stable in cost. I am an optimist, and I love technology. If I thought for one moment that windmills would be a source of low cost energy, I would be building them. The reality is quite the contrary--wind power is wasteful of human and natural resources.
Vermonters cannot let such a blatant take-back of the public trust succeed. They must not stand idly by while the state's ridgelines are sacrificed to wind development.
In "Going With The Wind" (July 21), George Sterzinger [executive director of the Renewable Energy Policy Project] writes, "Every kWh of wind avoids on average 1.3 pounds of CO2 emissions from natural gas generation and is therefore at least a step towards a prudent climate stabilization policy."
Do we now want to see pristine ridge lines turned into pincushions with enormous white turbines whirring along the skyline? Most people support clean energy sources, but at what price? Is this the vision Americans had of its national forests when these wild places were set aside for our children and their children to enjoy?