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Anti-wind group questions ability to ‘do wind right’  

Credit:  The Irregular, www.theirregular.com 6 April 2011 ~~

WILTON – Friends of Maine’s Mountains, an organization dedicated to protecting both the Maine economy and Maine environment from proliferation of industrial wind power, recently asked for better critical thinking by advocates and policy makers.

Thursday, March 31, Maine Audubon and the Appalachian Mountain Club, Maine Chapter, co-sponsored Doing Wind Right, a public forum with a panel of speakers representing environmental groups and the wind lobby. The question being asked to prompt the forum’s discussion was: “How might Maine develop land-based wind power as a renewable energy source while protecting ecological health and natural heritage?”

In response to that forum, an FMM spokesperson said that the group appreciates the tacit acknowledgement that wind power has shortcomings. However, FMM asserts that the forum begins with the wrong question.

“Why are we asking how we might proliferate a high impact, low benefit electricity generation source,” said FMM Government Relations Director Chris O’Neil, “When we should first be asking why might we do it?”

According to FMM, its publications show that wind power is an ineffective electricity generation source, made less viable and essentially irrelevant when sited in the challenging topography of Maine’s remote mountains.

According to Steve Thurston, co-Chair of Citizens Task Force on Wind Power, the Legislature never critically asked why utilize wind when it enacted the Wind Act in 2008.

“True critical thinking,” said Thurston, “would be enhanced if this forum’s panel included an engineer and an economist who could explain how much goes in, and how little comes out of this energy modality.”

“We appreciate the emerging sensitivity to wind power’s impacts, as evidenced by the very question being asked at this forum,” said O’Neil. “However, they need to honestly quantify and qualify wind power’s negligible benefits or we will be set back to where we were two years ago, before Maine started to wake up to this bad deal.”

For more information about Friends of Maine’s Mountains, visit the Web site www.friendsofmainesmountains.com.

Source:  The Irregular, www.theirregular.com 6 April 2011

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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