Articles filed under Impact on Landscape from Massachusetts

City reveals potential turbine sites; Possibility of additional wind structures has abutters on edge

Hearing of the map from her neighbor, Nan Cook couldn't believe it. Drafted by the city's former planning director, Nancy Colbert, last March, the map shows possible locations where wind turbines could be placed in the industrial park. There are about 22. ...Cook, who lives on Hill Street, called the possibility of adding 22 more turbines to the industrial park "insane."
4 Mar 2009

Cape Wind battle is far from over

The media have obscured the significant dangers of this irresponsibly sited project with careless generalizations and speculation. Headlines like "Key hurdles cleared" and "Cape Wind ready to rev up" would have us think that the construction barges and pile drivers are on their way. Suggestions that Cape Wind's approval for a federal lease is just two weeks away are far from the truth. Cape Wind is nowhere near a done deal - and the fight is far from over.
16 Feb 2009

Turbine venture defeats detractors

A group of town residents and state environmentalists has lost a legal challenge against the Hoosac Wind Project, a 30-megawatt turbine venture planned for Bakke Mountain in Florida and Crum Hill in Monroe. Their case - which hinged on permitting - attempted to reverse the state Department of Environmental Protection's June 2007 decision to grant a wetlands permit for the estimated $45 million project. Eleanor Tillinghast, president of Green Berkshires, a plaintiff in the case, said an appeal is being considered.
13 Feb 2009

Wind power push whips up Mass. turbine debate

Unlike other forms of green power such as solar panels or landfill methane gas, it's hard to hide a wind turbine, particularly in a state as small and densely populated as Massachusetts. ...That's creating a dilemma for conservationists and environmentalists who support renewable energy, but also want to preserve the state's wildlife population and scenic vistas.
25 Jan 2009

MMS gives Cape Wind favorable review except for birds, navigation and visual impacts

The Minerals Management Service's 800 page Final Environmental Impact Statement on Cape Wind was released on Friday and in a largely favorable review found nearly all impacts to be negligible or minor. The few exceptions, where the 130 turbine wind farm would potentially or certainly have moderate to major impact were on birds, especially marine birds such as terns or sea ducks, on navigation and safety of recreational or commercial fishing boats, although those effects could be mitigated, and on visual resources of Nantucket Sound.
20 Jan 2009

First offshore wind farm is meeting stiff resistance

The fate of what would be the nation's first offshore wind farm is calling attention to the political obstacles facing renewable power, despite President-elect Barack Obama's determination to greatly expand its use. The project, called Cape Wind, is a Boston firm's plan to build 130 windmills across 25 square miles of federal waters off Cape Cod. ...A spokesman for the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound says the group sees "lots of room to protest" the government review.
13 Jan 2009

Report: Wind farm will affect views

The region is also recognized as the heart of a long-running and contentious debate over whether the country's first offshore wind farm should be built in Nantucket Sound. Now, the lead federal agency to review the proposal by Cape Wind Associates to build 130 wind turbines in the Sound has found that the project would have an "adverse effect" on the view from 28 historic properties as well as the ceremonial practices and traditional cultural sites of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) and Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe.
13 Jan 2009

Windmill balloon test flawed, but still raises concerns

As flawed as this [balloon] test was, and maybe even misleading to many, it sent a clear message: turbines of this scale are not appropriate for Cohasset, and are not fair to impose on its citizens. Rather than asking the developer to spend more money proving his case, the planning board should first rule on all the fatal flaws of the project that by any objective measure would terminate it.
26 Dec 2008

Groups question how MMS is handling Cape Wind historic preservation issue

In a Dec. 17 letter, the federal Advisory Council on Historic Preservation notified the U.S. Minerals Management Service, the lead federal agency for permitting the proposed 130-turbine wind farm on Horseshoe Shoal in Nantucket Sound, that the MMS needs to take account of historic preservation concerns linked to Cape Wind before or concurrently with issuing a record of decision on the wind farm, and not after. ...[The] council questions whether the agency has completed key aspects of that process, such as documenting to the Massachusetts state historic preservation officer its findings on the area of potential effects on historic properties posed by the wind farm.
25 Dec 2008

Planning Board tackles turbine issues

In a packed Town Hall auditorium, the continued public hearing on the proposed twin wind turbine project off Route 3A began to give residents a better picture of the breadth and impact of the project. The nearly three-hour meeting was a mix of technical information, questions and answers and airing of resident concerns. The 100-plus audience was well informed and it was clear through many of the comments made residents had done their research on turbines. Dozens spoke on myriad concerns from noise to shadow flicker to the impact on property values.
5 Dec 2008

Near-300-foot structure set to go up; As turbine parts arrive, neighbors keep up the fight

The pieces of the tower that will support the wind turbine to be built in the coming weeks at Mark Richey Woodworking are so massive, they dwarf the humans preparing them to reach skyward. Once assembled, the tower alone would serve as the tallest structure in Greater Newburyport. ...The group has started a Web site,, that links to research video showing the potential hazards of these massive turbines, from health hazards to safety fears. One video shows a turbine collapsing in the wind.
19 Nov 2008

City must rethink Richey wind turbine decision

I am writing this to make clear my vehement opposition to the wind turbine proposed by Mark Richey Woodworking. It will be constructed in the Newburyport Industrial area at 40 Parker St. I do support renewable energy but I feel that the location for this turbine is a highly unsuitable one. I do not believe that the Newburyport Zoning board (ZBA) thoroughly investigated the impact that these projects would have before approving them. This turbine will have a direct and very negative impact on the neighborhoods that surround them.
22 Oct 2008

Opposition grows over wind turbine; At 292 feet tall, structure would be tallest in Newburyport

At 292 feet tall, there's nothing in the city that comes anywhere near the height of the wind turbine that Mark Richey wants to build at his woodworking factory in Newburyport's industrial park. It's almost twice as tall as the spire on the landmark Unitarian Universalist Church on Pleasant Street, which at 159 feet towers above the city's skyline. The turbine has all the permits it needs, but homeowners near Mark Richey Woodworking are starting to rally against the 600-kilowatt turbine on the Parker Street property. They've appealed the permits to Superior Court.
20 Oct 2008

Violating a trust

Often, the visual impact of 130 wind turbines as tall as the Statue of Liberty in the middle of Nantucket Sound is presented as a clash of aesthetic sensitivity vs. alternative energy reality. But the National Trust for Historic Preservation has reminded the U.S. Minerals Management Service that real laws and mandates exist, and it says MMS is not going by the book in its evaluation of the Cape Wind project. ...Nobody, the National Trust included, expects that the views at the Kennedy Compound or the Nantucket historic downtown will remain forever unaltered. But Congress has decreed that all efforts must be made to preserve the integrity of historic sites, and the MMS must comply.
7 Jul 2008

City green lights Annisquam wind turbine

A third wind turbine has received City Council's seal of approval. Compared to the matched set of giants that will rise nearly 500 feet from a central high point in Blackburn Industrial Park and help Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates cut into its annual $2 million energy bill, the single tower authorized by the council last week is small. But the top of the blade, as designed, would be 180 feet above the granite ledge on which developer Mac Bell intends to construct an office building containing numerous "green" innovations other than the turbine. ...If it is built, Bell's smaller turbine will be much more obvious than Varian's to those coming into the city, since it would stand on the east bank of the Annisquam River...
2 Jun 2008
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