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Residents demand say on wind project

TRURO – Residents concerned with the prospect of 72 wind turbines being built in the Higgins Mountain area had a voice at Colchester County Council’s committee meeting Thursday night to plead their case.

The Folly Lake/Wentworth Valley Preservation Society is a group which has “spent thousands of hours learning the good, the bad and the ugly of wind power,” said Peter Bigelow, the group’s representative at the committee meeting.

“We’re willing to work to see wind power on Higgins Mountain, but there has to be community consideration in these things,” Bigelow said.

There are currently three turbines in the area, which have been up and running for a year and half.

Most residents don’t have a problem with two of those turbines but the third has apparently caused some concerns because of its proximity to homes.

“There are successful (wind energy) projects but they went in with their eyes wide open,” he said. “They didn’t just say to the wind proponents’ this is the best thing since sliced bread.’”

There are a variety of issues that need to be taken into consideration, including human health concerns, according to Bigelow.

As a result, the preservation society is urging council to consider imposing regulations on where windmills can be constructed in relation to homes and business.

“I understand your passion, but I completely disagree,” county mayor Mike Smith said to Bigelow.

“It sounds to me like you don’t mind wind power as long as it’s not in your community,” Smith added. “I think if we had a bunch of windmills adjacent to our property I wouldn’t have a single problem with it.”

Colin MacLean

The Amherst Citizen

4 April 2008