A bill in the New Jersey Legislature would revise standards for wind-generation facilities and permit commercial-scale wind turbines of any size on preserved farmland.
But the bill makes no provision for environmental review, public input, or municipal or State Agricultural Development Committee oversight. It would essentially transfer the powers of community self-determination and home rule to powerful special interests that have no connection to the land or the affected communities. Property owners, natural resources, productive farm soils, and migratory birds would also be impacted.
If passed, this bill would have far-reaching ramifications for the agricultural industry and would undermine the rural character of South Jersey’s farm belt and many other communities along the Delaware Bay located within a high wind-generation zone.
Renewable energy at the expense of productive farmland is not “sustainable development.” The public did not pay to preserve these farms so they could become industrial zones for intensive wind and solar installations.
Manager, Delaware Bay Program
American Littoral Society
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