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Vote for Ashland ordinance on large wind energy systems

  • Published in Letters

To The Daily Sun,

On Election Day (Tuesday, March 11), the Ashland Planning Board urges the voters of Ashland to approve an Ordinance for Large Wind Energy Systems by voting "yes" on Question 2 on the Zoning Ordinance Ballot. Like other land-use ordinances, this one will help to guide future development so that the results are beneficial to the town, its residents, property owners and taxpayers.

If the strict standards and procedures incorporated in this ordinance are adopted, town officials will have the authority to enforce requirements regarding height, set-back from property lines, noise and adverse environmental impacts.

With large wind-energy projects, the state's Site Evaluation Committee has jurisdiction over the approval process and may consider the impact upon the state, but not necessarily the impact upon the local community. It has already proved prudent for some towns in New Hampshire to have a large-scale wind-energy ordinance in place prior to the arrival of a developer with plans that may not be in the best interests of the town or its residents.

New Hampshire's energy policy has yet to be established by the Legislature, and consequently the state's standards for wind farms are weak and poorly defined. By approving Question 2 on the Zoning Ordinance Ballot, Ashland's voters will have a voice if or when a wind farm is proposed in our town.

Ashland Planning Board