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Moratorium in Kingston; Limits in Kingston & Shelburne

April 16, 2014

The Kingston moratorium creates a two-year time-out from wind turbine siting while study of noise issues continues. When siting resumes, developers will have to meet more stringent siting guidelines to protect residents from strobing light.  Kathryn Gallerani reported for Wicked Local Middleborough  in “KINGSTON TOWN MEETING: Future wind turbines will have to prove flicker won’t impact neighbors:”

Any developer hoping to install utility-size wind turbines in Kingston will have to wait until after April 15, 2016.

And, with any proposal, the developer will have to prove that the shadow flicker from that turbine won’t affect neighboring households.

Town Meeting voters quickly approved a moratorium on industrial wind turbines Tuesday night but debated implementing a regulation on flicker that could be prohibitive for new wind turbine projects. The final vote was 101-43; the measure passed by the needed two-thirds majority.

A later story by Robert Knox appeared in the Boston Globe South edition as “Wind Turbine Rules Changed” (4/27/14).

Shelburne’s expiring two-year moratorium  for “on-premises” turbines will result in a vote on May 7, 2014 on a proposed zoning bylaw. Shelburne had already banned commercial projects. In her article for the Greenfield Recorder, “Shelburne to revisit bylaw for wind turbines,” Diane Broncaccio writes:

It’s been two years since about 300 residents filled Memorial Hall Auditorium to deliberate windmill zoning at a time when the town was facing a proposal for a large-scale wind farm. Back then, voters banned commercial-scale wind farms from town by a 195-57 vote and voted 229-46 in favor of a moratorium on “on-premises” wind turbines for generating power for farms, homes and businesses.

Now the town Planning Board has drafted a bylaw that will be presented at annual town meeting at 7 p.m. on May 7, for “on premises” wind turbines. The new bylaw provides standards for placement, design, construction, monitoring and removal of wind energy systems. If approved, it would replace the two-year moratorium on smaller wind turbines.

Shelburne’s draft bylaw restricts turbine height, distance from property lines and roads, noise levels, and strobing. It also allows the town to take action when a turbine is considered “abandoned.”

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