To the editor,
I took a drive to Lowville recently, just to see the wind turbines. These wind turbines, which have been in place for years, are impressive: majestic and very quiet. Cows graze around them. They have become a familiar part of the landscape.
I understand that the wind farms also bring clean energy for the town, and school financing. Oswego County could use that kind of economic investment, too, and I think we’d find wind farms just as congenial a neighbor as Lowville does.
I would like my County Legislator Mary Ellen Chesbro, who is vice chair of the standing committee for economic development and planning, to be just as enthusiastic about renewable energy as I am, and to make sure we get some large-scale renewable energy projects here. Such projects would bring us major benefits like tax and lease payments as well as the family wage jobs other communities across New York state already enjoy.
County Legislator Chesbro and her colleagues could help in another way, by supporting the new Office of Renewable Energy Siting, which would quickly unlock the economic benefits of coming renewable energy plants. ORES replaces the current arcane bureaucracy, and is designed to preserve local participation. With ORES, a five to ten-year approval process is shortened to one year.
If New York communities don’t speed up renewable energy development, they risk losing out on investment to other states and Canada. Meanwhile, we must meet state goals to move us off fossil fuels. Our County Legislator should be leading Oswego County to a renewable future, and bringing renewable energy projects home.