Cohocton Wind Watch: ALBERT H. BOWERS October 9, 2009 Letter to NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
Cohocton Wind Watch is a community citizen organization dedicated to preserve the public safety, property values, economic viability, environmental integrity and quality of life in Cohocton, NY and in surrounding townships. Neighbors committed to public service in order to achieve a reasonable vision for a Finger Lakes region worthy of future generations.


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Friday, October 09, 2009

ALBERT H. BOWERS October 9, 2009 Letter to NYS Department of Environmental Conservation

ALBERT H. BOWERS III
NAVAL ARCHITECT & MARITIME CONSULTANT
P.O. BOX 177 – 11891 ACADEMY STREET
CHAUMONT, NY 13622
(315) 649-2191
BERTNA@TWCNY.RR.COM

October 9, 2009

Mr. Stephen Tomasik, Project Manager
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
625 Broadway, 4th Floor
Albany, New York 12233-1750

Re: Proposed Transmission Line Cape Vincent/Lyme - St Lawrence Wind - Environmental Impact

Dear Mr. Tomasik:

I have reviewed St Lawrence Wind’s Impact Statement for the proposed transmission line from its proposed wind turbine installation in Cape Vincent, New York to the substation in the neighboring town of Lyme. I have the following specific comments regarding the proposal:

• I am a resident of the Village of Chaumont, Town of Lyme and recognize that there are no positive benefits for residents in Lyme, excepting possible property taxes levied by the Town, from the passage of this distribution line through the Town of Lyme.

• The location of the proposed transmission line follows a former railway bed, which is also the location of a water line, administered by DANC. This water line is the sole water supply to the villages of Chaumont, Brownville, and Glen Park. There is, in my opinion, an unacceptable risk to the continuity and quality of our water supply resulting from the construction and operation of this transmission line in such close proximity to our vital water supply. In addition to the danger posed by construction along this vital corridor, the overhead lines and poles are vulnerable to damage from wind or ice storms and could lead to damage to the water line.

• Lyme has developed a law to govern wind development in the Town. In the survey and public hearings held to develop the wind law, there was a clear majority of the residents who expressed a preference for such transmission lines to be below ground.

In addition to the specific objections stated above to the location and configuration of the transmission lines, I vigorously object to the entire project.
There is no proof that wind turbines, such as those proposed by St Lawrence Wind for Cape Vincent, actually result in lower usage of fossil fuels or greenhouse gas emissions. Several European countries, notably Denmark and Germany, have built many more wind turbines for their size than the US and their Mr. Stephen Tomasik experience shows no improvement in the usage or fossil fuels or reduction of greenhouse gases. The reason for this is the inherently variable nature of wind which means that wind turbines cannot be counted as baseload generating capacity. In fact, the variability of wind is such that other powerplants must be kept spinning in the background to supply the grid whenever the wind speed drops.

All electrical generating sources are quite capital intensive. Wind is the most capital intensive and duplicates already existing baseload generators. Wind, therefore, adds substantially to our cost to generate electricity. Since New York has one of the highest costs in the nation for its electrical power, the addition of wind power will make us less competitive with other states and reduce our likelihood of attracting real businesses to our state.

Wind power would not exist but for the subsidies and tax breaks granted by the federal and state governments and the further kindness towards developers of PILOTs at the local level. I believe New York State should enact a statewide moratorium on wind development until the effects of this form of renewable energy can be thoroughly and dispassionately analyzed for its effects on our overall economic health as well as the effects on the physical health of communities and the natural environment. The wind will always be there, what’s the rush?

Sincerely,
Albert H. Bowers III
cc: Lyme Town Board
Watertown Daily Times, Nancy Madsen

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