[ exact phrase in "" • results by date ]

[ Google-powered • results by relevance ]


News Home

Subscribe to RSS feed

Add NWW headlines to your site (click here)

Sign up for daily updates

Keep Wind Watch online and independent!

Donate $10

Donate $5

Selected Documents

All Documents

Research Links


Press Releases


Publications & Products

Photos & Graphics


Allied Groups

Current turbines plague bylaw hearing  

Credit:  February 13, 2013 | By ARIEL WITTENBERG | www.southcoasttoday.com ~~

FAIRHAVEN – Planning Board Chairman Wayne Hayward made it clear from the start Tuesday night that he only wanted to hear constructive comments on the board’s draft turbine bylaw.

“This is your chance to give feedback on the proposed bylaw,” Hayward reminded the 25 or so residents in attendance. “It is not a chance for us to receive complaints about the wind turbines already in existence.”

The proposed bylaw would halve the height of turbines allowed in town as well as quadruple the distance turbines must be from the nearest residents.

Past meetings of other boards on the subject have seen some high emotion. To make sure there were no problems this time, two police officers were stationed in the Town Hall Banquet Room. Their presence was one of 14 measures taken by the Planning Board in an effort to keep attendees of the highly anticipated hearing on topic. The session mostly was, although Hayward had to remind some residents to speak to the specifics of the bylaw.

Zachary Aubut, who said he lives two-thirds of a mile from the two turbines at the wastewater treatment plant, took exception to Hayward’s opening comments.

“Health complaints about the current turbines are an important part of the discussion when you are talking about how close these things should be to people,” he said.

“I don’t think anyone in this room opposes green energy, but you have to realize the impact of turbines on health is not something that is shared by the community at large,” he said. “You don’t realize what you are asking abutters to live with.”

A few members of WindWise, a group that opposes the town’s two turbines, told the board they thought the rewriting of the town’s current bylaw proves the town’s two turbines cause adverse health effects.

Hayward distanced himself from that argument, saying he “would disagree with the idea that this hearing is proof of anything.”

“Those two turbines are not the worst-case scenario,” he said. “If a developer walks in the door today, we are required by our current bylaw to allow him to build a turbine up to 515 feet tall as long as it is 515 feet away from residents. There would be a lot more complaints than there are now.”

Ann Richard, the sole speaker to advocate for more lenient regulations, took issue with Hayward’s statement that the proposed bylaw would be among the strictest in the state.

“I don’t think that’s something our town should be proud of,” she said.

Following her comment, roughly 15 audience members began coughing and continued to do so throughout the rest of her testimony.

Speaking with an audience largely made up of WindWise members who preferred stricter regulations, Hayward reminded those present that if the draft bylaw does not pass Town Meeting this year, a similar turbine bylaw revision could not be brought up again until 2015.

“That will leave us very vulnerable,” he said.

WindWise member Dawn Devlin said she wished there was a provision in the bylaw requiring turbine developers to buy the homes of people whose doctors confirmed they had adverse health effects from turbines.

But, she said, she would reluctantly support the bylaw at Town Meeting because “something has to be done.”

“I’d like to see some other provisions built in, but at least this protects a few more people,” she said.

Source:  February 13, 2013 | By ARIEL WITTENBERG | www.southcoasttoday.com

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

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding
Donate $5 PayPal Donate


News Watch Home

Get the Facts Follow Wind Watch on Twitter

Wind Watch on Facebook


© National Wind Watch, Inc.
Use of copyrighted material adheres to Fair Use.
"Wind Watch" is a registered trademark.