Industrial wind turbines dominated the news in 2006 in northern Caledonia County, as they did in 2005.
Readers can also look forward to more stories on wind in 2007.
This is also true for news on the Ginn Development at Burke Mountain and a proposed merger between the village of Lyndonville and the town of Lyndon.
In a case that was watched by wind developers around the state, the Vermont Public Service Board denied a certificate of public good for East Haven Windfarm Aug. 31. The decision was based on the fact that the developer had not conducted bird and bat studies.
This decision elated wind opponents and baffled others. EMDC, a Montpelier company doing business as East Haven Windfarm, filed a petition with the PSB Nov. 17, 2003, to construct four 1.5-megawatt turbines on East Mountain in East Haven on the site of a former military radar base. If a project of this size could not be built there, where could any wind facility in Vermont be built? That is a question still being asked. The answer may be coming in 2007.
UPC Vermont Wind hopes it will be successful in obtaining permission from the PSB to build 16 420-foot turbines in Sheffield and Sutton. The company scaled back the original application for 26 398-foot turbines, 20 in Sheffield and six in Sutton. Earlier this month, the Vermont Department of Public Service offered an opinion that no turbines should be erected in Sutton since the town plan does not allow tall structures on ridge lines and the people of Sutton do not want them.
Sheffield residents, however, voted in favor of the project and the town has an agreement with UPC to support the wind developer’s efforts before the PSB in exchange for yearly payments to the town.
UPC’s quest for a certificate of public good is far from over. More testimony will be filed in early January and technical hearings are scheduled to begin Jan. 29 and run through Feb. 9. Then more briefs will be filed in March.
By Jeanne Miles
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