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Scituate Weighs Impacts to Residents in Considering Further Turbine Shut-down

October 5, 2017
Scituate wind turbine

Click to access WADT 95.9 FM Radio’s report by David Cedrone.

For families living near wind turbines, it is easy to lose heart when their complaints are not acted upon. So people will perk up at the news that the Scituate selectmen are again weighing the shut down of its turbine at night.

In her article, “Scituate selectmen consider shutting down wind turbine,” Patriot Ledger reporter Mary Whitfill interviewed town officials and wind turbine neighbors.

On Tuesday, selectmen asked town health director Jennifer Keefe and acting Town Administrator Al Bangert to determine how much money the town would lose if it stopped operating the turbine.

“I personally do not want to see residents impacted negatively with their health and wellness,” Selectman Maura Curran said. “But I think we do need to see what is the impact to our town if it is turned off every night.”

There is no question that residents have been negatively impacted, and a lack of complaints is not a real indication of their circumstances, according to Valerie Vitali.

“Here is this home we’ve had for 36 years and it’s not the peaceful place it once was,” said Valerie Vitali, who lives on the Driftway.

“I chose not to call and complain every night because I can’t live my life screaming at you. I love my home and I love my property, but it’s a problem. … It’s a plane circling that never lands, and it’s a vibration.”

Scituate-2200ft

Scituate turbine 2200 feet from these homes. Photo by Dave Dardi

Wind turbines across Massachusetts are in violation of the MassDEP’s noise standard, but developers have prevented curtailment in many communities. As in Scituate, the operations are shut down for limited periods or under specified conditions (e.g. wind speed low and from certain directions). If this were any other industrial use in a residential neighborhood, the turbines would be turned off to allow sleep, at the very least.

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