Bayshore Regional Sewerage Authority’s plans to bring components of a much-debated wind turbine through Monmouth County are in jeopardy.
The wind turbine parts are scheduled to be trucked through Hazlet, Matawan and Union Beach, which along with Aberdeen, Holmdel, Keansburg and Keyport, have all come out against the wind turbine’s construction.
Union Beach, where the energy-producing turbine will be located, has sought an injunction to stop the delivery of the turbine’s parts starting around July 23, said Union Beach Mayor Paul J. Smith.
A hearing date on the injunction has not been set yet, said Stuart J. Lieberman, attorney with Princeton-based Lieberman and Blecher, acting on behalf of the borough.
In March, another hearing was held and Union Beach is awaiting a decision from that, Smith said.
Robert C. Fischer, BRSA’s executive director, said March’s hearing had no bearing on the authority moving forward with its plans.
“We have been previously advised by counsel that the turbine can be delivered and installed while we await the appellate decision since the decision will not answer the question of whether or not the turbine can be built, only whether or not it has to go back to Union Beach Planning Board for a variance,” Fischer said.
With the recent injunction, however, “now that an application for temporary restraint has been issued we do not know the outcome,” Fischer said.
The turbine is to be used to generate electricity for the authority’s wastewater plant in Union Beach.
The authority spent more than $1 million on electricity in 2008, and the 262-foot, 1.5 megawatt turbine will enable the BRSA to cut their electric bill in half, according to the authority’s website.
Sewer rates were reduced by 18 percent, and the authority plans to reduce the rates again in January 2013, but only if the turbine is installed, Fischer said.
“Unfortunately, the continued legal delays are stealing the first year of savings on this renewable energy project. The authority wants the turbine erected so that the rumors about vibrations and noise can be put to rest. We can cut our utility bill in half, play a part in reducing greenhouse gases and drop sewer rates once again.
“An injunction will obviously jeopardize these benefits further,” Fischer said.
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