Responses are mixed to Iberdrola Renewables constructing 37 wind turbines in the ridges above Penn Forest Township.
“We would still vacation here,” said Anthony Rendell of Hudson Valley, New York. “I see no problem. I like to see something different when I leave home, it’s part of being on vacation.”
Others are dead set against the turbines.
“I don’t want them,” Frank McHugh of Albrightsville said. “They kill property values and they will damage the watershed. And every time I have ever driven past them somewhere, only one of two might be turning, the rest just sit there. No one would even be interested in building them except they are getting government subsidies.”
Others were more ambivalent.
“It’s that way with anything, you will always find people who aren’t going to like it,” said Joseph Willow of Jim Thorpe. “But I would rather see windmills than strip mines, but then again, these are not going to be in my backyard.”
Brian Dorman of East Brunswick, New Jersey, has been coming to the Poconos since he was a little boy. His grandfather owned a cabin in Lake Harmony which was torn down years ago to be replaced with what he called a McMansion on the lake front.
“I come here to hike and fish. I played on that lake as a kid and someday I hope to have kids and bring them here as well,” he said. “I don’t know if you would be able to see them from where my grandfather’s cabin was or not, maybe only from the ski slopes.”
“I guess I really don’t have a problem with wind energy in general. I just think it might be better in the middle of an ocean or a desert, not so close to where people live and vacation.”
Iberdrola is seeking a special exception from the Penn Forest Township zoning hearing board to construct the turbines on property it is leasing from the Bethlehem Water Authority. The hearings continue this evening at 7 at Penn Forest Volunteer Fire Company No. 1.
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