BOURNE – Cape Wind, the plan to harness wind power out off the coast of Nantucket, has raised the ire of residents and environmentalists. Now, another plan to put tall turbines on private property right near the gateway to Cape Cod has residents saying “not in my back yard.”
“I would open my door and I would see a huge turbine right above my neighbor Andy’s house, staring at me every morning,” said Karen Runyon, who lives in a Bournedale neighborhood near the proposed wind farm.
If the plan is implemented, Andrew Intrieri would have a turbine built 1,200 feet behind his home.
“I think I’m entitled to peace and prosperity in my own house, and to be forced to have a wind farm put in my back yard without a say is unconstitutional, as far as I’m concerned,” said Intrieri.
New Generation Wind proposed seven turbines across 400 acres of privately owned land. Three turbines would be located in the Cape Cod Aggregates sand and gravel pit on the mainland side near the Sagamore Bridge. Four turbines would be built closer to Route 25, not far from a residential area.
A spokesman for New Generation Wind said the turbines would be 492 feet high and would be located on average of 1,000 feet from the nearest home.
“This is a project with incredible benefits in terms of renewable energy,” said Greg O’Brien, a spokesman for New Generation Wind. “I think now is the time for these wind turbines and they’re safe, they’re efficient, and I find them attractive.”
The turbines would be visible from the bridges and the canal and just above the tree line in a Bournedale neighborhood. Residents there are concerned about property values, noise and possible effects on the environment and their health.
Neighbors there said the turbines would be too close to their homes to be safe.
“There’s these low frequency vibrations that are given off and emitted over time, and there’s a long list of health effects from sleeplessness to it interrupts the electrical system of the human body,” said Runyon.
“There is no scientific, and I stress peer-reviewed, evidence, that there is any negative health effect from a wind turbine,” O’Brien said. “There is a core of opponents that are opposing wind turbines and they are spreading a lot of information that’s just not true.”
New Generation Wind will spend the next year trying to win over neighbors and get approval from the Cape Cod Commission. But with neighbors battling the alternative energy turbine, going green is easier said than done. The debate over locations of wind farms in Bournedale and in the hotly debated Cape Cod Sound highlight an age-old problem.
“Everyone says not in my back yard, but our motto has been these don’t belong in anybody’s back yard,” said Runyon.
That sentiment has been expressed in Western Massachusetts as well. Nearly 100 people packed a meeting recently to express concern about a proposal to build an eight-10-turbine wind farm along a mountain ridge in Brimfield, Mass.
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