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Southern Tier campaigners take the fight to Albany

On Monday, December 16th, Southern Tier campaigners will bring their opposition to industrial wind turbines directly to Albany. The NYS Siting Board is meeting there at 10 a.m. to consider Texas based Calpine’s application to build a wind facility on the slopes in eastern Broome County. They will meet in the 19th Floor Board Room of the Department of Public Service Albany office, located at Three Empire State Plaza. (Enter at concourse level only.) One of the Siting Board members will participate from New York City in the Video Conference Room C on the 4th floor of the Department’s office at 90 Church Street.

Anne Lawrence from the Broome County Concerned Residents (BCCR) explained that “We want to tell the Siting Board how we are being steamrolled by Calpine, which wants the Board to ignore our new local wind law, just passed by the Sanford Town Board. Calpine has disclosed none of the ‘inconvenient truths’ about this project and has done all the planning without any real public input. It is time for the public to be heard and for the Siting Board to apply the substantive local law, as is mandated by article 10, Article 168.3.”

BCCR has argued that the turbines, which if erected on the fragile steep slopes above the towns would be higher than the Empire State Building, are dangerous for the health of nearby residents. They also argue that eagles, lakes, hills, fish, and well water all are at great risk.

Anne Lawrence explained that “28 NYS Bird and environmental organizations have co-signed a letter to Governor Cuomo stating that this is the WORST location in NYS because of the immediate threat to the Golden Eagle population, and beg of him that this project should not be sited here. We are also very concerned about the bats that were added to the endangered species list after the application went through the evidentiary hearings.”

BCCR has also pointed to the fossil fuels required in the manufacture, installation, operation and disposition of turbines. So, while intending to offset the production of fossil fuels to protect the planet, these turbines actually add to global destruction.

A local resident has concluded that “The minimal amount of electricity produced and the negligible CO2 offset, does not justify the many negative environmental impacts to flora, fauna, and humans this project, as designed, will incur.” We urge the Siting Board to do the same.

The Siting Board – Board on Electric Generation Siting and Environment is charged with streamlining the permitting process for power plants of 25 megawatts (MW) or greater.

Contact: Anne Lawrence 917 407 3976, Joan McKiernan, 917 497 2730