Several wind turbines could potentially power government buildings around Nye Road, benefiting taxpayers across Wayne County, members of the local Alternative Energy Task Force told the Board of Supervisors yesterday.
Task force Chairman Terry VanStean said the Nye Road area was one of five promising sites identified by his group and suggested measuring the wind there to see if it in fact blows hard enough to make turbines feasible.
Information from the task force will likely be passed on to the board’s committees for further discussion, said board Chairman James Hoffmann, who called the concept interesting.
Several county facilities are located near Nye Road, off Route 31, including the nursing home, the county jail, sheriff’s department and public health offices. If a proposal to create a county office complex at the old nursing home goes forward, many other county departments would move there from downtown Lyons.
Close by is one of the highest points in Wayne County, a site that may well be a good spot for several wind turbines, VanStean said. Devices to measure the wind there could be placed atop a nearby water tower at a cost of $1,500 to $1,800, he said.
The task force, a non-profit, has no funds of its own, but VanStean offered to help the county with wind power information and networking with wind energy companies.
State and federal aid might be available to help with wind turbine construction, but the county would likely have to bear the rest of the cost itself.
“We’re here as a tool for the towns and for the county,” said VanStean, who asked if anyone had questions.
Arcadia Supervisor Joe DeSanto said he’d looked into wind power in 2000 and was told that there might not be enough wind in Wayne County, except in Sodus. But VanStean said turbine technology has improved since then and that they now need less wind to operate efficiently.
A Newark High School student attending the meeting with her government class asked about the turbine’s environmental impact, which VanStean said can be mitigated by proper site selection. Unlike other energy sources, he said, they operate cleanly and without emissions. The only impact comes from noise, which he likened the level to that of a conversation; the turbine’s physical appearance; and the possible danger to birds, which VanStean said was no greater than that posed by a cat or tall building.
By Jim Miller
Finger Lakes Times
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