A local wind turbine project that is allegedly creating a bad image for other energy initiatives is being criticized by the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee (CDTC).
CDTC Chair Catherine Collette wants commercial wind turbine developer Larry LeBlanc to end his proposed Whalerock project that would place wind turbines on the north side of U.S. 1, which she says is causing town residents to oppose other alternative energy projects.
“Whalerock is effectively dead anyway, but until it is formally withdrawn, it provokes Charlestown residents to turn away from intelligent investments in alternative energy,” Collette said. “The town has already over-reacted to misinformation and fear by enacting its March 14th ordinance that effectively stifles all wind energy development in Charlestown.”
The CDTC is blaming LeBlanc’s project for the town council’s ban on all wind turbines not built for town use. The group says the town lost out on $750,000 in grant money to build turbines because the ordinance made it impossible to comply with the terms of the grant.
State Representative Donna Walsh, a member of the CDTC, says she also opposes the Whalerock project.
“It’s ironic that when I was on the Town Council, I opposed extending building heights to 35 feet, and here is a project that would be hundreds of feet high,” Walsh said.
Collette said ending the Whalerock project would help restart the energy policy conversation in Charlestown.
“Charlestown still lacks a comprehensive plan to discourage addiction to fossil fuel and nuclear power by welcoming alternative energy development and conservation,” she said. “We need a fresh start and a new focus on developing a sensible energy policy for Charlestown. Cancelling Whalerock once and for all and adopting a positive Charlestown policy for alternative energy would be a great way to start.”
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