Wind of Controversy Blows In Carbon County Over Proposed Turbines

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CARBON COUNTY -- Residents living in one part of Carbon County are up in arms over proposed wind turbines near their homes.

"I've worked two and three jobs my whole life to afford to live in this neighborhood where it's peaceful and tranquil and quiet, where I want to grow old and retire and die here,” said Dan Towne of Towamensing Township, who lives in Beltzville Lake Estates.

Atlantic Wind, a division of Iberdrola Renewables, is proposing a plan for 40 wind turbines on a mountain ridge just above the housing development on the Penn Forest Township and Towamensing Township line.

If approved, construction could start in 2018.

"I think they're going to destroy a beautiful place up there. It's gorgeous up there. There's birds that are going to be affected. There's animals' habitats that are going to be affected, and it's going to ruin a beautiful place,” said Andrea Miller, a Beltzville Lakes Estates resident.

Penn Forest Township supervisors heard an earful at their meeting Monday night.

"You guys have every reason in the world to deny this. I hope you guys stop this. You will destroy everything,” said one man.

Another went so far as to build a model of the project to scale and present it to the crowd.

“Almost everyone I speak to comes to the Poconos because they love the beautiful environment here. They did not come here to live underneath a massive industrial complex."

Township supervisors listened to what people had to say.

They won't make any comments until they actually have a decision to make on the proposal.

“I'm all for clean energy, don't get me wrong, but there's probably a thousand other places they could put these things that would be more beneficial to you know where we live and what we do,” said Philip Woolf of Towamensing Township.

The Penn Forest Township zoning board is going to consider granting a special exception that will allow the wind turbine project to move forward. That is scheduled for May 12 at 7 p.m.

5 comments

  • bengprice

    Iberdrola, Atlantic Wind LLC is the developer that multiple communities in New Hampshire fought off in the Newfound/Cardigan Mountain Region in 2013. They had submitted an application to the SEC for a project to include 47, 500′ tall turbines. When the towns of Grafton(2013), Danbury, Alexandria and Hebron(2014) all passed Sustainable Energy Future Community Bills of Rights (local ordinances asserting community rights and prohibiting these industrial wind projects), Iberdola withdrew their ISO interconnection que request (power purchase request) the day after town meetings where the ordinances were adopted. By the end of the summer of 2014 they terminated all of their land leases. The communities worked with the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) to draft the rights-based ordinances. CELDF offers free services to communities seeking to protect local community rights and ecosystems

  • sue

    I understand why they want to put them up here. It’s very windy up here. I’d want to see their plan first. Make sure the turbines are tall enough so they don’t interfere with the hawks and other raptor birds. There are a lot of them up here. I also want to know what the sound level would be like. Sound travels very far up here. I live a good 10 or 15 miles from the race track but we can hear it during the races. Money is not the only thing the township should consider. There is quality of life for the people who live here that should weigh heavily in their decision.

  • ImAReader

    With all the forestry in the poconos I think they can find an area less settled where this technology wouldn’t impact seniors who have worked hard to retire without this stress.

  • Guest

    No pipelines. No windmills. Where do you think all the energy you consume comes from? You pump your gas and run your AC, without a problem. When anything energy-related comes to your neighborhood, however, it’s the end of the world. Such hypocrisy.

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