Bingham Wind project: opponents concerned about decommissioning costs
(Portland, Maine) The Maine Board of Environmental Protection (BEP) posted its draft recommendation today on the Bingham Wind Project appeal.
The Board packet materials for the March 5, 2015 meeting (including the staff recommendation / Draft Board Order) are now posted on the Board’s webpage at www.maine.gov/dep/bep under the March 5 Agenda. On March 5 the BEP will hear oral arguments.
Friends of Maine's Mountains (FMM) has opposed the project for more than two years two years. The Department of Environmental Protection granted the license, and FMM promptly filed the appeal last fall when First Wind's financial future was cloudy.
“We’re not surprised to see the DEP staff defending their original decision,” said Rand Stowell, a member of the FMM board of directors. “Even though it is a rare occurrence, we hope that the BEP will overturn the decision. But if they won't overturn it, at the very least we would like to see some stricter conditions placed on the permit.”
Stowell conceded that it is difficult to win an appeal Maine’s Supreme Judicial Court, but held open the possibility that FMM will appeal if the BEP gives the project a green light.
“We’d like to see much tougher standards on the question of decommissioning wind turbines when they’ve exhausted their useful life. We find that, generally, this issue does not get astute consideration from policy makers,” Stowell said.
Friends of Maine’s Mountains (FMM) is an non-profit educational organization that raises awareness of the destructive toll that industrial wind turbines inflict on Maine’s precious and finite mountain areas. For more information, www.FriendsOfMainesMountains.org.