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Dartmouth should pull in reins on wind project

As regular readers of the Chronicle well know, there has been much contention and heated debate surrounding the town’s proposed wind turbines on Chase Road.

Much has been said, but little decided, and Wednesday’s Board of Health meeting appeared to be more of the same. Sometimes, however, the most prudent course of action is non-action, and I think this is one of those instances.

It was said at last Wednesday’s meeting that the state’s Department of Environmental Protection is currently reviewing its wind turbine regulations.

The state’s appointed select panel is expected to release its findings soon, but the exact date is not known at this time. It would be unwise for the town to make policy decisions based on current regulations when they are subject to change in the near future.

The town of Falmouth’s turbine is a cautionary tale. According to one of the sound engineers retained by a group opposing the proposed turbines, it was first estimated that the town’s wind turbine would generate some $120,000 per year in revenues. But, because of the current operating restrictions imposed upon the turbine by the Falmouth Board of Health, it now operates at a loss of some $120,000 per year.

Most people will agree that renewable energy is a wonderful thing. But wind turbines only produce energy when they are working, and the town should have a clear knowledge of the upcoming regulations before it decides to invest in any wind turbine project.

Jason Paul Protami