PERU — An open house to provide information on a potential industrial wind project is set for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 22, at the former Peru Elementary School.
Katie Chapman, project manager for EDP Renewables North America, said the team from the Houston-based company will be on hand to answer questions and provide information to residents.
Tentatively proposed are construction of between 25 and 35 wind towers along the Black Mountain ridge in Peru. Chapman said the project is in the very early stages.
“We want to engage the community and discuss the project,” she said.
She said a meteorological tower that measures the amount and the speed of wind was installed late last year. A number of engineering efforts and environmental studies have yet to be conducted.
EDP Renewables is headquartered in Madrid, Spain, and has built many wind farms in Europe and 28 that are operating in the United States, according to a fact sheet submitted by the company.
Bill Hine, chairman of the Peru Wind Power Committee, said a moratorium on the development of wind farms is in place until November.
Between now and then, he said a public hearing to discuss wind power and to be be updated on the work completed thus far on a wind ordinance has been scheduled for 7 p.m. May 29 at the former school. Also, Peru residents will have a chance to give their opinion on whether on not they favor such development at a straw poll at referendum on June 12.
“Our committee is struggling to find what the community wants,” Hine said. “The straw poll will help guide us.”
He said a survey asking opinions on wind power was included in the tax bills mailed out last year. Few people responded, he said, but those who did were skeptical of such development.
Selectmen appointed a committee to explore wind power and to begin to develop a town ordinance over a year ago.
Whenever a wind ordinance is established, Hine said it will govern any company that is considering an industrial wind project on other mountains in the town as well as on Black Mountain.
Chapman said she and her company will continue to work in a collaborative process with both the wind power committee and members of the community.