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Peru Rejects Turbine Noise at Special Town Meeting

July 12, 2013

Lucas Willard’s WAMC Radio news report captures the issues facing tiny Peru MA in “Voters In Berkshire Town Defeat Amendments To Wind Turbine Bylaw.” Monday’s special town meeting defeat of the proposed bylaws was significant. “‘If we had voted in favor of the proposal it would have opened up the entire town for development,’ said (John) DiTammaso.” Click here to listen.

John DiTamasso, a concerned town resident who engaged in grassroots organizing to encourage citizens to attend the meeting, said he is concerned over ill-health effects caused by wind turbines including headaches and sleep disruption,and said the changes would have taken power away from citizens in a town that many residents find is unsuitable for wind development.

The Berkshire Eagle also covered the meeting, reporting Peru voters reject plan to lower level of noise allowed by wind turbines:

The special town meeting was delayed 30 minutes to account for an overflow crowd at the Town Hall. The more than 250 people in attendance — 42 percent of the town’s registered voters — had to be shuffled to the more spacious new fire station.

Two of the opinions captured by staff reporter Dick Lindsay were:

“The bylaw should only allow turbines in commercially zoned areas,” said Candice Cahalan.
Kevin Cahill, who is concerned a greater setback is needed from homes, wants to revisit the bylaw allowing for up to a 660-foot turbine 990 feet from the nearest house.
He said no matter how many turbines are erected, “some people are going to suffer seriously with their health.”

WAMC’s Willard included a clip from an interview with Steve Ryeck of Heath, who noted “‘When we did the research it became fairly clear that there were a lot of issues around health and noise.'” Willard also included Eleanor Tillinghast’s view:

“I think what we’re seeing throughout the region, throughout the state, and actually throughout New England is that people are looking at the experiences of other people who live near wind turbines and are saying ‘we don’t want that in our community’,” said Tillinghast.

Eleanor is a board member of Wind Wise ~ Massachusetts who lives in the Berkshires. For more on the bylaw language, see Peru’s Voters Weigh Noise Control.

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