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Lowell wind site: ANR inspects runoff controls after the storm  

Credit:  Robin Smith, Staff Writer, The Orleans Record | orleanscountyrecord.com 31 May 2012 ~~

LOWELL – A Vermont stormwater specialist spent Wednesday investigating how well the Lowell wind project runoff controls fared during Tuesday’s torrential rainstorm.

As of late Wednesday, there was no word about how Green Mountain Power’s systems of ponds and drainage areas held up in the face of rain of three to more than five inches in a few hours.

GMP contractors worked during the storm to keep runoff control ditches, ponds and “spreaders” from being overwhelmed with sediment, GMP spokesman Dave Coriell said Wednesday afternoon at the staging area for the wind project off Route 100.

So far, he said, the crane path and turbine sites on the top of the Lowell Mountains fared well after the storm. The access road linking Route 100 with the crane path did not wash out, he said.

Some ditches were eaten away and some repairs are needed, he said.

There was a lot of sediment in the ponds and control areas, he said.

Coriell said he could not comment Wednesday on how well the stormwater runoff controls, like ponds and level spreaders, performed.

That is up to Kevin Burke, an erosion specialist with the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources.

Burke was on the mountain Wednesday checking each stormwater control, Coriell said.

“We have ANR up on site right now. We’ll let them decide,” he said.

GMP’s environmental team was also on site.

Coriell said it could take several days for GMP’s own team and ANR to check the entire stormwater control system.

They look at not only the runoff from the site, but how water flows into the site from outside, he said.

GMP is prepared to make any adjustments if any are required by ANR, he said.

The wind site dodged the worst of the remnants of Tropical Storm Irene last fall. But this storm targeted Lowell, as well as Albany and other parts of south-central Orleans County.

“This was a pretty massive event that happened,” Coriell said.

Source:  Robin Smith, Staff Writer, The Orleans Record | orleanscountyrecord.com 31 May 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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