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Residents flock to wind developer’s open house asking about potential project effects  

Some attendees felt their questions were left unanswered because the project was in its early stages of development. John O. Yerdon, the president of the Redfield Fire Company, said the developers could not answer his questions about the project’s potential impacts on the Salmon River aquifer and who would pay for additional services calls and special training caused during development. Paul W. Miller, who fishes in the Tug Hill region, said the developer did not provide enough detailed information to answer his questions about the project’s potential sound and wildlife impacts. “The details aren’t there,” Mr. Miller said. “There is no siting for where things would be.”

Credit:  By Marcus Wolf | Watertown Daily Times | March 9, 2017 | www.watertowndailytimes.com ~~

REDFIELD – Several nearby residents and property owners with mixed opinions of Atlantic Wind LLC’s proposed Mad River Wind Farm attended the developer’s open house Wednesday with questions about how it will affect them, with many who left wanting to know more.

The Redfield Fire Department hall was filled with more than 50 part-time and full-time residents from Jefferson and Oswego counties asking the project development team from Avangrid Renewables, Atlantic Wind’s parent company, about the project’s scope, potential benefits and environmental impacts. The developer hosted two open houses about its proposed 350 megawatt project located in the towns of Worth and Redfield 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m.

“It was a really good turnout,” said Jenny L. Briot, the New York and New England manager for the company.

Some attendees felt their questions were left unanswered because the project was in its early stages of development.

John O. Yerdon, the president of the Redfield Fire Company, said the developers could not answer his questions about the project’s potential impacts on the Salmon River aquifer and who would pay for additional services calls and special training caused during development. Paul W. Miller, who fishes in the Tug Hill region, said the developer did not provide enough detailed information to answer his questions about the project’s potential sound and wildlife impacts.

“The details aren’t there,” Mr. Miller said. “There is no siting for where things would be.”

In order to assess Mad River Wind Farm’s potential environmental impacts on the 20,000-acre plot or working forest it leased from Salmon River Timberlands LLC and adjacent municipalities, Michael E. Clayton, a permitting manager for Avangrid Renewables, said the development team hopes to complete its breeding bird, raptor, bat, wetland, archeological and other impact surveys by the end of the year.

Mr. Clayton also said once the development team determines their turbine locations, it will “be able to put together visual simulations to show what the project will look like from various points of interest.”

Douglas A. Jones, the president of the Tamarack Hunting Club Inc., said he wanted to know whether the project’s interconnection to the Volney-Marcy 345 kilovolts transmission line will run through the club’s property south of Salmon River Timberlands’s property. Christopher P. Schilling, a land agent for Avangrid Renewables, said the team has not yet determined the location for the project’s interconnection point.

“You can’t ask questions, and if you ask questions, you don’t have answers,” said former state senator H. Douglas Barclay, Pulaski. “In their mind, they think its a done deal. I find that very disturbing.”

Other attendees claimed they development team provided them with straightforward answers.

Neil J. Cheney, Redfield, said he wanted to know more about the locations of its up to 125 turbines and how the developer will deal with an “environmentally sensitive area.” Bart N. Cheney, Redfield, said he wanted to know more about the types of jobs and revenue the project could bring.

According to one of its displays, the developer estimates that Mad River Wind Farm will create 20 permanent jobs, 350 part-time construction jobs and provide $60 million in revenue to affected municipalities and school districts over a 30 year period, or $2 million annually.

“I think they were straightforward with their answers,” Neil Cheney said. “I’m looking to be involved in the public input of the project.”

Norman J. Paradis, Worth, said he asked about the potential environmental impacts, the project’s lifespan and project time line. The developer expects Mad River Wind Farm to become operational by 2021, according to one of its displays.

“They gave me pretty straightforward answers,” Mr. Paradis said.

Ms. Briot said the development team intends to host an open house in another affected municipality in late May or early June. She also hopes they will open their project office at 5010 County Route 17 by the end of the month.

“It’s pretty much set up,” she said.

Source:  By Marcus Wolf | Watertown Daily Times | March 9, 2017 | www.watertowndailytimes.com

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

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