2008-03-13 / Editorial

Cape Wind proposal of interest to islanders

Federal hearings are underway this week in Massachusetts to solicit public comment on the environmental impact of a proposed wind farm in Nantucket Sound.

You've probably heard about the ongoing debate. A private developer wants to build 130 wind turbines, each 440 feet tall. Included would be a massive 10-story electrical service platform. The project would cover 25 square miles.

The proposal has divided the residents of Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard. While many people favor green sources of energy, they are concerned about the losing forever the natural beauty of Nantucket Sound.

How does this proposed wind farm impact Jamestown? For starters, many us are boaters who frequently cruise the waters of Nantucket Sound.

But, we should pay close attention because we may see a similar wind farm proposed off the shores of Conanciut Island. Rhode Island lawmakers are actively encouraging the development of renewable energy resources. There are at least two wind farm investers who have expressed interest in building an electrical generating project similar Cape Wind in our local waters.

Currently, the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council in considering a one-year moratorium on renewable energy projects. The CRMC's next meeting is on March 25.

You can learn more about the Cape Wind debate on the Internet at www.saveoursound.org and at www.capewind.org. Both Web sites have information on the project and details about how to voice your opinion.

- Jeff McDonough

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