Honorable Charles Baker July 12, 2015
Boston, MA 02133
Dear Governor Baker:
This letter is in support of your recently-filed legislation (click) “An Act Relative to energy sector compliance with the Global Warming Solutions Act.”
Friends of Maine’s Mountains (FMM) is the non-profit environmental/ratepayer/taxpayer group responsible for opposing the proliferation of grid-scale wind energy generation in Maine’s special mountain areas. Massachusetts energy policy matters a lot to us. As our fellow ISO – New England states pursue renewable and climate protection mandates, Maine has found itself in the crosshairs for site location of wind energy facilities, which we now know are very high-impact and very low-benefi
FMM is not anti-renewables. In fact, Maine has the highest renewable portfolio standard in the country, and with 99% of Maine generation coming from clean sources other than coal & oil, Maine trails only two states (Idaho and Vermont) for lowest CO2 emissions from electricity.
Maine enacted a law in 2008 seeking to make us a “leader” in wind energy. At the time it was widely assumed that other New England states would buy the electricity. FMM was formed to halt what appeared to be a statutory/regulatory “red carpet” for wind, which is neither necessary nor useful. The official goal was for Maine to have installed 2000 megawatts of wind capacity by the end of 2014. Despite incentives and mandates, FMM has been able to limit that buildup to just over 400 megawatts. The fact is, Maine doesn’t need more generation, but to the extent New England does, we need base load and peak load generation. Wind energy can do nothing to replace or even displace workhorses like Brayton and Salem. Big hydro can.
Along with our Governor LePage, you have led the charge on critical natural gas infrastructure upgrades that will stop billions of ratepayer dollars from bleeding our collective economies. The two of you are similarly leading on procuring big hydro, despite the political hurdles.
Given the choice between hosting thousands of unsustainable 50-story wind turbines or hosting one or two transmission lines bringing firm and clean capacity, FMM will take the latter! Please let us know how we can support your legislation.
Rand N. Stowell
Chairman, Friends of Maine's Mountains
P.O. Box 60 Weld, ME 04280