I write in response to Mr. Buford’s Oct. 14 letter titled “What’s the NIMBY plan for alternative energy in Hopkinton?”:
Who knew that the Hopkinton Conservation Commission was in the energy development business? Mr. Buford’s childish name calling – “NIMBY” – and his mischaracterization of the local residents group as “anti-renewable energy” is unbecoming at best.
Of course we are concerned about our backyards, and everyone else’s too. Responsible siting is the key to renewable energy. To date we have seen egregious siting attempts leading to legal action, all of which could have been avoided with responsible planning. When will these blatant attempts to encroach on private property rights stop in this town?
Recently, the Town Council voted 3-2 making wind turbines a non-permitted use in Hopkinton. The three “no” votes did so after listening to their constituents’ concerns and digesting innumerable scientific studies as well as firsthand accounts documenting the negative effects that turbines have on human health and wildlife. Perhaps that information went over Mr. Buford’s head. It is important to note that he did not provide a single piece of evidence to rebut our concerns, not one.
Wind turbines will not make a rapid transition from fossil fuel – land-based wind energy is not an efficient source of renewable energy; just ask the Rhode Island Department of Energy. They will not preserve our farms – in fact, not one Hopkinton farmer spoke in favor at the last Town Council meeting. I fail to see how the installation of wind turbines would equate into future funding for the Land Trust, nor would they generate significant non-residential tax revenue.
Finally Mr. Buford, I encourage you to read the data and firsthand accounts that were provided before you disregard factual citizen concerns. The Conservation Commission should stick to conservation and not presume themselves to be experts on any form of industrial development.
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