The Martha’s Vineyard Commission released a summer status report this week on the Island’s wind power planning efforts. Find the report at mvtimes.com.
The MVC produced a preliminary summary of information in January that covered some of the pros and cons of a wide range of wind energy topics, including the impact of wind turbines in terms of noise, scenic and cultural impacts, and recreational activities.
The MVC invited representatives from the six Island towns, Gosnold, and other organizations to appoint representatives to a work group that met for the first time in March to start developing a wind energy plan for Dukes County.
Since then, the work group has been looking at several issues in more detail. The group currently is working on a series of maps to identify local areas with special resources and scenic resources that would be most impacted by wind turbines.
Throughout the summer and fall, the work group will conduct sessions on specific topics such as noise and birds, as well as a public form, according to the status report.
Under the heading, “What do you think?” the report asks the Vineyard and Gosnold communities:
. Should the area around Dukes County produce enough renewable energy to offset our consumption? More? Less? None?;
. On land, should we prioritize allowing turbines or protecting abutters and natural/scenic resources?;
. Offshore, is it okay to have turbines within a mile of shore? Three miles? Ten miles?;
. Should we be less restrictive of turbines owned by towns or a community cooperative than we are for commercial projects?
Information about the wind planning effort and discussion boards may be found on the MVC’s website, www.islandplan.org. Upcoming meetings will be announced on the website and on notices posted in town halls.