Murray answered questions about wind power at the Country Club of Pittsfield at the event sponsored by the Berkshire County Chamber of Commerce. The discussion was focused on the development of large-scale industrial wind turbines. Murray said she does support wind power in the proper location, and gave an example of a landfill in Kingston.
Eleanor Tillinghast of Green Berkshires, located in Great Barrington, says Green Berkshires supports wind power in the appropriate environment, but mountain ridges such as the site of the Brody Mountain Wind Farm are not a safe area for wind turbines.
While Murray has stated she does not support a moratorium on new wind-farms, Tillinghast says that Murray seems to have reversed her stance for the past two years on the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act, which is the more important issue. Tillinghast argues that the Act would take power away from local residents that oppose a wind turbine.
Earlier this year, at a ceremony dedicating the Brody Mountain Windfarm in Hancock , Governor Deval Patrick announced the need for the Siting Reform Act, saying that without it development of wind power can take much longer than it should, which leads to an unnecessary increase in costs.
Jane Winn of BEAT – The Berkshire Enviornmental Action Team – believes the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act is dangerous because areas considered for new wind power run the risk of not receiving a proper review for ecological protection.
Senator Benjamin Downing also attended the event with President Murray. Downing chairs the joint Committee on Telecommunications and Energy, and has been a supporter of the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act. He anyone interested in discussing the siting bill to attend an energy forum at the Berkshire South Community Center in Great Barrington on December 14th.