May 15, 2011
Letters, Maine

Clairvoyance about Highland Wind Project

Kennebec Journal, 15 May 2011

In a opinion piece titled “Basic Questions About Wind Power Still Unresolved,” your paper states that the reason people who are against industrial wind power rejoiced when the Highland Wind Project was withdrawn was not because of wildlife concerns but because they would not have to look at the turbines.

Since the editor seems to have clairvoyant powers about this issue, I would like to try my hand at it as well.

Here are a few specifics about what Angus King knew by way of his environmental consultant long before the reapplication was submitted to LURC:

* His project likely would have negative impact on two state endangered and threatened species, one species of special concern, three significant wildlife habitats, and potential mortality to as many as eight special concerned species of bats.

* That 50 percent to 80 percent of the raptors surveyed by King’s consultant flew within the height of the proposed turbines.

* On average, 23 percent of spring migrants passed through the sweep zone of the proposed turbines.

* The passage rate of raptors and nocturnal migrants through the project area are among the highest reported in the state.

King states in his project withdrawal letter to LURC on May 2, “Highland Wind received comments that would suggest additional data would be necessary to satisfy agency (primarily Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife) concerns.”

This is ludicrous as his consultant had been working with the department for more than three years on this issue so there were no surprises for King in the report.

The editor of the opinion piece can speculate people against wind power are gleeful about not having to look at the turbines, but what does King’s approach to business and his attitude toward the environment say about him?

Norman Kalloch

Carrying Place Town Township

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