Protect the mountains forever

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Congratulations to Gov. Paul LePage for introducing a bill to repeal the Expedited Windpower Act, enacted in 2008. It is about time the Legislature repealed that act, which is destroying Maine’s mountains.

The 2008 act was prepared by a top-heavy group of power companies, developers and conservation organizations. There is no mention in their report of preventing damage to the fragile mountains and the surrounding ecosystems.

Those same mountains are the sponges that collect and store water from rain and snow and release it gradually into springs and brooks, which provide clean water for Maine’s rivers and lakes.

Wind power projects destroy those mountains by creating massive roads up the steep slopes, blasting huge holes in the ledges and clear cutting swaths of forest land for transmission lines.

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All of that destruction is done under the guise of providing renewable energy for states south of Maine.

The energy may be renewable, but the mountains are not.

I hope that the responsible citizens of Maine will strongly support Gov. LePage’s plan to protect Maine’s mountains forever.

Fred Huntress Jr., Poland Spring

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  • Jim_L

    Thank you Fred for your informed and passionate comment about the beauty of Maine and the lunacy and corrupt nature of the wind industry in Maine. I hope we are going to be turning the corner away from ridiculous destruction of our environment for ineffective renewable energy.

    • Earthling4

      So you’re opposed to hydropower, right? Because as you know, that destroys far, far more forest lands than wind power.

      • Jim_L

        Not run of river hydro. Barely raises water levels at all. And fish ladders are easily installed. There was a beauty in Veazie and another years ago in Bangor. Full time, reliable, cheap, easily transmittable hydro power. Very unlike the power from wind and solar.

    • Midnight Tree Bandit

      Head on down to the Appalachian coal country of West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, and Pennsylvania and tell me how coal production is not a ridiculous destruction of the environment, Are their mountains so much less beautiful that’s it’s okay to literally cut down the mountains to bare nubs, damaging the creeks and rivers in the region with the waste products of coal production? Or is that okay because coal is somehow less ineffective?

      Is it okay to dam up rivers, displacing people and animals from their natural habitats, submerging acres of land under water, and disrupting salmon spawning patterns? That’s not environmentally damaging?

      Fracking and oil extraction are environmentally friendly? Tell that to the people whose water tables have been ruined by fracking, and who deal with an increasing number of earthquakes due to the disruption of the Earth’s crust by cracking it.

      I’ll take the wind and solar, thanks.

      • mainer18

        hey midnite tree thief were not in va pa or ohio… what benefit does the wind towers do for the maine people my electric bills just keeps going up

        • Midnight Tree Bandit

          Typical selfish nimby. “I don’t live there so I don’t care what they’re destroying.”

      • Jim_L

        The wind here is going to Mass, RI and Conn. You just pay for it. M*r*n.

  • Earthling4

    LePage’s bill does not repeal the Wind Energy Act. The author’s exaggerated claims about the damage a wind project does are laughable. We have been building roads into the mountains for centuries, and somehow we’ve managed to survive. Hydropower projects destroy literally hundreds of times the forest area that a wind project impacts. But hey, you can’t see that from the AT, it just looks like a natural lake.

    No worries, I’m sure the NIMBYs will be here soon enough to tell me how wrong I am.

    • Midnight Tree Bandit

      Not to mention how hydro dams disrupt the migratory patterns of salmon to their ancestral spawning grounds But hey, it’s not like we need fish for anything, amirite?

  • Midnight Tree Bandit

    I have seen many wind farms in my travels around Maine. I have yet to see any “destroyed” mountains. They are still standing, still just as tall as ever, and except for the stalks rising from their peaks, largely unchanged in appearance. Still covered by trees and still green.

    If you want to see destoryed mountains, head on down to West Virginia and eastern Kentucky, where coal minining removes the tops of entire mountains, leeching coal ash into the waters and irrevocably cutting down the mountainscape.

    Everything is relative.

    • Patten_Pete

      We don’t burn coal in Maine to make electricity.

  • Totalltosquat

    Yep! The wind blows all the time, the sun shines all the time, and we continue to rip off the taxpayer for less than 30% efficiency! Then when a unit has to be removed, we again hit the taxpayer for a Million plus, so it will not interfere with the investors!

  • Jim_L

    To Midnight Tree Bandit and Earthling4:
    Take a flight over the wind developments from about 1000 feet and tell me about how many acres of trees from the very tops of the mountains are removed. Tell me how wide and destructive the roads that have to be used by HD trucks, cement trucks, turbine tower trucks, cranes and bulldozers have to get up the mountain. Tell me about the acres of trees around each turbine have to be cleared and defoliated annually along the whole system, sometimes running 15 or 20 miles. Show me results of how much “free energy” they produce compared to their plate value. Tell me about the number of dead birds and wildlife that have been disturbed by turbines. Tell me about land values that have plummeted near the turbines. Lie to me about how many jobs that have been created and how many trees have been cleared for the power lines to carry the remote power (losses) from the turbines to the relay stations.

    As far as the mountains in W.VA, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Indiana and other states, when the mining ends the landscape has to be restored and retreed, much the way landfills have to be done everywhere else.

    Hydropower like in Orono or the ones torn out in Veazie and Bangor do NOT have to destroy forests or land. They are run of river dams that can be made very fish friendly and very productive and we sure have plenty of rivers in Maine. Plus the lines along the waterways are usually already there so we don’t need expensive transmission lines to connect them.

    So stop your new world order Bull C*** about renewable energy and let’s just build a gas line from Pennsylvania that will provide clean energy, cheaply and reliably and can heat our homes cleaning up the atmosphere also. We use lots more oil for heating than we do for electricity.

    • Midnight Tree Bandit

      They don’t replant, despite promises. They don’t clean up the crap that runs off into the creeks. And the mountain tops are still chopped off with the leftover stone thrown down into the ravines and valleys. And, for that matter, they don’t do a damn thing for the miners dying by the thousands of black lung. They just let them go and say “Hey, good luck and all.” You apparently didn’t hear the interview with the forty year old miner whose lungs were so damaged and full of coal dust that wouldn’t clear that he sounded like a 90 year old man. His remaining life was counted in months if not weeks. I don’t think wind turbine builders have a big issue with black lung. Wind power doesn’t emit carbon into the atmosphere, endangering our health and that of our children. Mountains are still the same height they were at the start. There is no wholesale removal of trees followed by blasting off the tops of the mountains that lasts for YEARS.

      All in all, I’ll take a few downed trees which I can’t even tell from the ground level — you know, where I live — and workers who don’t die of a lingering, painful disease over the wholesale destruction of the environment that comes from fossil fuels production and consumption. I’m sorry you think they’re ugly.

      But you’re comment about “New World Order bullcrap” says all we need to know about you.