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Testimony to TUE: reject bill expediting wind turbines

September 10, 2011

Wayne Klug told the energy joint committee, “Unlike some of the other speakers I’ve heard this afternoon, I don’t believe that this bill can be fixed or revised; it cannot be tweaked; it can only be rejected.”

Spokespeople for reputable Berkshire environmental and development agencies illustrated why the bill is flawed:

Tad Ames of the Berkshire Natural Resources Council cited the failure of the bill’s authors to fix omissions in spite of these things having been raised in the past:

  • standards should precede passage and inform regulations
  • no matter what decision the local siting makes, the wind developer can go to the state siting board for a permit, even if the decision is to reject the proposal
  • citizens in abutting communities should have a right to be involved in the process.

He pointed out that the delays in projects like Berkshire Wind are frequently caused by the developer’s mistakes and not regulatory delay.

Nate Karns of the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission emphasized his organization has “been requesting standards for 7 years.” He said this lack is very troubling and helps to “feed the regional psychosis” where western Mass. is suspicious “of what Boston has in store for us.” With a siting bill in place, he argued, “if you have a wind resource, you’ll have a turbine.”

Providing comic relief, Andrew Wells offered tongue-in-cheek testimony–adopting the persona of a wind developer, “As I look out from shining turbine to shining turbine,  I see that our job here is done.”

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One Comment leave one →
  1. September 11, 2011 2:40 pm

    We need to review what happened in Falmouth , Massachusetts and the history of the two turbines installed to close to homes in Falmouth.

    The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MTC) was stuck with two commercial wind turbines in 2005 at $3300.00 per month in a warehouse in Texas. They were out of warranty and were holding a contest to try and sell these two politically embarrassing turbines to some town in Massachusetts. The two turbines were repurchased in 2010 by the Town of Falmouth somehow using federal stimulus funds.The turbines icluding electric upgrades cost over five million each.

    The MTC paid for the Preliminary Wind Turbine Financial Analysis and all the favorable reports to install these two wind turbines in Falmouth as they were stuck with millions of dollars worth of old turbines. The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative is the state’s economic development agency for renewable energy.

    The towns of Fairhaven and Mattapoisett fought their own towns over the setbacks to these same turbines that were being used in the contest to see which towns in Massachusetts would receive the turbines first prior to 2008.

    Two citizens groups in Mattapoisett and Fairhaven used local zoning bylaws and state general rules to bring up the negative impacts of installing these types of turbines in their local towns. The commercial wind installations were dropped in these two towns as a result of the citizens groups.

    The result of the battle against the two turbines in these two towns is the proposal by the state of Massachusetts to vote in the WESRA,Wind Energy Siting Reform Act. This act is not a “reform act” but a means to end local zoning bylaws to install commercial wind turbines in our back yards! Why else would the state want the Wind Energy Siting Reform Act unless it was to bypass local zoning.

    Gov Patrick has a goal of renewable energy quotas in Massachusetts and has to take our residential property rights in the areas of the state that have the highest wind speeds.

    We will never forget the testimony Gov Patrick gave in convicted Ex Speaker Sal Dimasi trial : Memo to “Sally Reynolds”: When did this deal begin to smell? It was one of the stranger moments in the federal court testimony by Gov. Deval Patrick, called as a witness in the corruption trial of former Speaker Sal Dimasi. Gov Patrick used a fake email name with wind turbine contractors “Sally Reynolds”!

    Ex Speaker Sal Dimasi met in secret on Beacon Hill with wind turbine contractors on October 18,2007 – He has denied this meeting !

    The state wants to take our residential property rights to site commercial

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