Hanover’s interest in wind energy is about to be tested.
At town meeting early next month, residents will weigh in on the idea of building three wind turbines. Selectmen will be seeking approval for a $92,000 wind-power feasibility study.
Hanover is looking at the turbines as a potential power source for its public water wells and water treatment plant.
Several town committees are in favor of the study, which would determine how and where the town could build windmills.
Completion of the study would clear the way for turbine construction, Selectmen Chairman Alan Rugman said.
More than a dozen other South Shore communities, including Braintree, Cohasset, Kingston, Marshfield, Milton, Norwell, Pembroke, Plymouth, Scituate, Quincy and Weymouth, are exploring the use of wind energy. Hull has two turbines and wants to add at least four.
Hanover officials do not think the town would need to study wind patterns before building turbines.
The town’s consultant, Sustainable Energy Developments Inc., already has wind data for Hanover, Rugman said.
Still, nothing will be built without public hearings and approval from town meeting, Rugman said.
“˜”˜These are just studies being done,” he said. “˜”˜We’ll have to come back to town meeting to go through the next step, too.”
A top concern in Hanover is where the turbines would be built. Two of the proposed sites are near homes.
The public works board, which runs the town’s water utility, thinks a wind turbine would be ideal at its Pond Street water treatment plant because the plant is far from homes and businesses, Public Works Superintendent Victor Diniak said.
The public works board must approve the sites before any turbines are built. So far, its support for the two other windmills is unclear, Diniak said.
“˜”˜The other sites (on Beal Street and Broadway) are closer to homes,” he said, “˜”˜so the board of public works is more guarded about that.”
By Andrew Lightman
The Patriot Ledger
25 April 2007
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