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Ocean City mayor concerned about wind project’s view impact

OCEAN CITY, Md. – Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan says he may have underestimated how big a “thumbnail” would be when it comes to gauging the visual impact of a proposed wind project off the coast.

“They always talked about thumbnails, said Meehan. “Well, they’re a little bigger than a thumbnail.”

Meehan says he started having second thoughts about the project when he saw artist renderings of proposals that would place wind turbines 10 miles off the coast, seven miles farther out than originally proposed.

Meehan says he recognizes the economic and environmental benefits such a project could bring to the area, but he wants to make sure the public is aware of how the horizon could change.

“We only get one chance to get this right,” said Meehan. “I just don’t want there to be any surprises.”

Assateague Coastkeeper Kathy Phillips believes the visual impact would be minimal and outweighed by having a clean, renewable source of energy off the coast.

“Personally, I think they’re beautiful,” said Phillips. “And seeing those wind turbines….. is much better than looking at oil derricks offshore.”

The Maryland Public Service Coalition is set to hear public comment Monday night in Annapolis about the proposed 248-megawatt project. All public comment must be submitted by April 7 and the PSC will make a final decision on the applications by May 17.

For more information on the proposals:

Search Case #9431 on the Maryland Public Service Commission website:

www.psc.state.md.us

To submit written comments:

David J. Collins, Exec. Secretary, MD PSC

William Donald Schaefer Tower 6, St. Paul Street

Baltimore, MD 21202

(Include case #9431 in all comments)