Tibbetts shows mountains before, after wind-turbine construction

DIXFIELD — Freemont Tibbetts unveiled two films he has taken from above several mountain ranges that showed not only his disdain for constructing wind turbines on them, but also his love for the beauty of the state of Maine.

Eileen M. Adams/Sun Journal

Fremont Tibbetts, a Dixfield resident who made two films showing completed and proposed wind projects, narrated one live during Tuesday's unveiling of the film, and the second while he was filming it from the air. About 20 people turned out to see his work at Dirigo High School.

Tibbetts, 79, a fifth-generation resident of Dixfield, hopes to show the films to as many people as possible.

“It's great to see the mountains before they put the damn windmills up,” he said as he narrated the film of his flight about two weeks ago over what he called the loop of planned wind projects in Rumford, Roxbury, Carthage, Dixfield, Canton and Woodstock.

About 100 turbines in six separate projects are in various stages of planning in the six towns, with all but Rumford's and Roxbury's proposed by Patriot Renewables LLC of Quincy, Mass. Rumford's project is proposed by First Wind LLC of Boston, and Roxbury's by Independent Wind LLC.

Nearly 20 people from several of the towns involved attended the showing.

The film of the Rumford loop described projects that would top Saddleback ridge in Carthage, cross Route 2 to Colonel Holman Mountain ridge in Dixfield, then continue on to Canton Mountain and end on the Spruce Mountain ridge in Woodstock.

Tibbetts hired Rumford pilot Phil Zinck to fly him above the Rumford loop, then a few days later, over the already completed Kibby Mountain project built by TransCanada in Franklin County, and another proposed project in the Highland Plantation area just east of Kibby Mountain in neighboring Somerset County.

Tibbetts said he could feel the vibrations of the turbines on Kibby Mountain, describing how portions of mountaintops are blasted, then rods inserted into the earth to provide stability for the nearly 400-foot tall turbines.

“It's some beautiful up there,” he said.

The flight route included views of Flagstaff Lake, a multitude of small ponds, some of which Tibbetts said he has fished, and places he has logged. There were distant and close-up views of the turbines along the mountain ridge at the Kibby Mountain project.

“When hikers climbing the Appalachian Trail reach Mt. Katahdin (which could be seen in the distance), all they'll see is these red lights from the wind mills,” he said.

Dan McKay said DVDs of the two flights are being distributed, including in Dixfield stores, and he and Tibbetts are looking for other venues to show the films.

Dixfield residents will decide at the Nov. 2 election whether to approve zoning which would basically ban wind projects. Rumford residents will also vote Nov. 2 on an ordinance that would also ban such projects, if passed.

His opposition to the area projects won't end at the November election, Tibbetts said.

“It's going to be a long fight. It will be a struggle,” he said.

He acknowledged that many people have seen turbines and think they are magnificent.

Patriot Renewables will present its plans for the Dixfield project at a public informational meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at Ludden Memorial Library.


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 's picture

WOW! Dixfield pulled their

WOW! Dixfield pulled their ordinance off their ballot, Charlie Hoff resigned from Rumford's Advisory Committee and is telling people to vote against the permanent wind power development ordinance he was instrumental in drafting and forced before the voters all in one day. Is Rumford going to pull their ordinance from their ballot as well? We will be back just in time to vote either way.

 's picture

cement facts

Concrete is largely impervious to to damage and rust and is one of sturdiest building materials in the world — but it is responsible for a large amount of emissions in the construction industry.
Is wind power really a clean, effective means of reducing global warming? While wind turbines are non-polluting once they are up and running, the manufacture, transport and construction of a wind turbine produces thousands of tons of carbon-based emissions. Every step — from mining the ore to making the steel, moving parts by ship or overland, constructing access roads, and operating giant cranes and excavators — creates emissions. Building the access roads alone produces nearly ten thousand tons of emissions.
The problem of mercury pollution associated with wind projects is rarely mentioned, yet significant. Cement manufacturing releases large amounts of mercury from the limestone used as raw material. Figuring that North Country wind projects require about 180,000 lbs. (90 tons) of cement per turbine base, and figuring that 0.09 – 2 lbs of mercuy are released per ton of cement (according to EPA measurements), this means 5 – 10 lbs of mercury are indirectly released into the environment for every turbine built. For a 100 turbine windplant, 500 – 1000 lbs of mercury pollution is worth noting. (Environmental analysts note that cement production is one of the biggest sources of mercury pollution.)

be sure and see the film of Kibby project. these towers are huge.

 's picture

and online!

:) Mainers and the rest of the world (our tourists) need to see what we stand to lose!

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Have you been drinking Candiceanne's Kool Aid? She got it right from the wind industry.

 's picture

You sure ass-ume a lot

Don't you? I'm a liberal Dem, I'm uneducated. Wrong and wrong. You're boring me. Can't you do better than that?
Good luck getting a full-time, permanent job from a wind compay, by the way. They LOVE people like you. You actually take them at their word even with all the evidence to the contrary. Hey, I've got a bridge to sell you...and some First Wind stock.

 's picture

Verrill Dana and Preti

The thieving, truly criminal, wind industry has paid allies like Verrill Dana and Preti Flaherty. The citizens defending Maine have volunteers like Freemont Tibbetts. I'm going with Freemont and the volunteers to drive these criminals off the land.

 's picture

its not your land

you want to stop it buy the land out, otherwise Mind your own

GARY SAVARD's picture

At least if all these wind

At least if all these wind power projects were actually economically viable, there would be an argument for their development. All this is is a chance for Baldy and Angus to line their pockets at taxpayer expense. Our electric bills in Maine won't go down by 2 cents a month as a result of all these projects, and in 20 years, we'll have junk strewn all over our mountains as payback. Mainers are being raped on this along with their mountains.

 's picture

why on the mountains?

Why must the developers insist on putting the towers up on the mountains? Can't they place a few of them met towers in the valleys or the farmlands of Aroostook???
Sounds like greed to me.

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It is my understanding that you want consistent but not huge wind. And, the fields of Aroostook County are already being tested for windpower. As I understand it, windmill technology is now capable to handling windpower in open fields. Also, I believe windmills are placed along roads in Texas.

 's picture

Channel 7

Mr. Tibbetts may want to put his video on Channel 7, the local access channel. It will reach a wide audience at no cost.


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