September 27, 2012

Falmouth asks FAA to study turbine move

By Sean Teehan | Cape Cod Times | 27 September 2012

The Federal Aviation Administration is considering an application from the town of Falmouth requesting a study of possibly moving municipal wind turbines closer to the Massachusetts Military Reservation.

The application, which the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center filed on behalf of the town Sept. 20, specifies three locations to which the town could possibly move one or two turbines currently at the wastewater treatment plant on Blacksmith Shop Road.

Moving the turbines is one of the actions the Falmouth Wind Turbines Options Analysis Process – a panel charged with recommending options to reduce health complaints allegedly stemming from the turbines – is pondering.

“My understanding is that Mass. CEC was supposed to start the process to file a permit just to see if it’s even possible,” said Todd Drummey, who sits on the analysis panel. “If the FAA said, ‘No,’ that saves us a lot of time.”

Locations specified on the application lie on a wooded patch of town-owned land. If placed in any of the three spaces, one or both of the town’s 1.65-megawatt turbines could be just under two miles away from Camp Edwards on the Massachusetts Military Reservation.

At a turbine analysis process meeting during the summer, Falmouth Geographic Information System coordinator Robert Shea said an alternate site for one or both of the turbines could be about 3½ miles northeast of the current turbines, which is less than a half-mile from housing at Camp Edwards.

The housing falls within the distance the Cape Cod Commission ruled in May 2011 that turbines should keep from residential housing. Homes should not be within a 2,700-foot radius of turbines, commission members said.

But the commission would have no jurisdiction over the turbine placement and would not review it unless asked by Falmouth officials, Ryan Christenberry, a planner with the commission, told the Times in July.

[rest of article available at source [1]]

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