In reading the Nov. 26 Bangor Daily News editorial “A better LURC is close,” one must ask, “Better for whom?”
Certainly, for those of us living in LURC’s jurisdiction, there is nothing “better” about the prospect of the Maine DEP becoming the sole siting authority for all wind turbine developments in the state. Just when we thought the wind development nightmare in rural Maine couldn’t get any worse, we find out that it could.
The DEP has twice allowed wind developers to begin construction without demonstrating the financial capacity to complete their projects, something required by law. It has never allowed public comment on a wind project in a formal public hearing. It has never denied a grid-scale wind development permit. Most disturbingly, it has never enforced the state’s noise regulations when a wind development was shown to be out of compliance.
It seems it would be more cost-effective to not even review wind permit applications in Maine – the outcome wouldn’t be much different than the DEP’s.
Between Maine’s two current wind project siting agencies, the LURC commissioners have shown far greater insight into wind development review than the DEP. If they’re going to hand project review to one or the other, give it to LURC. The DEP is doing little more than rubber-stamping wind development permits.
DEP review of wind projects might be a wind developer’s dream, but it’s a nightmare if you live in the LURC jurisdiction.
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