Letter: Waiting for a Wind Turbine Proposal

By Duncan Coolidge

To speak to rumors regarding wind turbines on Ragged Mountain, I am penning this letter to the editor and community.

Many months prior to becoming a Town Selectman, or even considering that position, I approached a New Hampshire-based wind power generating company to find out whether or not such a project would be feasible for Andover. My motivation was to explore, not commit to, an additional source of revenue for the Town besides property taxes. This, recognizing the pressure property taxes place on the financial survivability of some of our fellow citizens and their ability to retain ownership of their properties.

Exploring all possible alternative sources of revenue and weighing, in public forum, the benefits, risks, environmental impact, and esthetics is an appropriate way to decide if any major proposal that is offered is acceptable. I do not think any off-hand rejection is an intelligent way to react to a possible proposal, particularly in light of the potential income it might offer the Town and the property owners of any leased property.

We are all faced with issues that require compromise. I think that whether or not such a project warrants any compromise should await the reality of a proposal. It will ultimately become a community decision.

Personally, I have absolutely no vested interest in the project, beyond the possible financial benefit to the Town and as a demonstration of our Town commitment to non-fossil-fuel energy sources.

I sincerely hope that everyone can be open-minded in awaiting a proposal in which we would require illustrations of the expected installation and installation impact, enabling us to evaluate it on a factual basis.

This project exploration is not in any way connected to or sponsored by our Town government, although if a proposal is made, it will become a Town government and community consideration, with appropriate hearings and an eventual vote to accept or reject the proposal.