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Turbine effects

An application for an industrial wind development in eastern Maine is pending before the Maine Department of Environmental Protection with a decision to approve or deny expected soon.

This proposed development consists of 14 459-foot-tall turbines across scenic Passadumkeag Mountain – one of the highest points between Mount Katahdin and Cadillac Mountain.

The turbines would be four to five times as tall as the largest white pines the region is noted for. In addition, red, pulsating lights would be fixed atop the towers, severely affecting the nighttime views of this largely undeveloped area and reflecting across many nearby lakes.

Maine law requires such developments to have no unreasonable effect on scenic resources of state or national significance. This project, proposed by Quantum Energy, would be well within view of four bodies of water (Nicataous Lake, Spring Lake, Saponac Pond and Lower Pistol Lake) that are rated either “outstanding” or “significant” for their scenic character by the Maine Wildlands Lake Assessment.

The turbines would be within a few miles of Saponac Pond, and would literally loom over camp owners and those recreating on this very special body of water. A third party hired by the DEP to measure visual effects stated specifically with regard to the effect of the project on Saponac Pond, “this project would dominate the views that many users would experience.” Driving by Saponac on Route 188, you can’t help but agree.

If the visual effects of this project are not determined to be unreasonable, what would be?

If you have concerns about this project, contact the DEP project manager at 446-9026.

Chris Jackson

Bowdoinham