The Irondequoit Town Board took up the issue of offshore wind last night. The meeting drew a lot of interest and a lot of public comments. When all was said and done, the town board unanimously passed a resolution opposing wind development in Lake Ontario.
Irondequoit is now the third Monroe County town to formally oppose the New York Power Authority's (NYPA) Great Lakes Offshore Wind Project (GLOW).
Of the 22 area residents at the town meeting who spoke about offshore wind, 19 were against it. They cited concerns about environmental degradation, declining property values and general anger at "downstaters" attempting to spoil Lake Ontario's natural beauty.
Irondequoit resident Christopher Fox was one of the speakers against the project.
"This doesn't make sense for our local community based on what it is we want to do as the town," said Fox. "So what we're asking is to speak up now, because that's the only opportunity we have."
Only three residents spoke against the anti-offshore wind resolution. They asked the town board not to rush to judgment, reminding town councilmembers that no specific proposal has been adopted. NYPA has identified roughly half of Monroe County's shoreline as a potential site for offshore wind development.
"I think it's too early," said Daniel Cooper or Irondequoit. "There are too many potential benefits to be judge, jury and executioner on the turbines on the basis of this impassioned hearsay."
NYPA is currently considering bids from wind developers. The country's largest state-run power organization says it's conducting a "thorough evaluation process for each proposal."
As we've been reporting, NYPA says it will announce which bids it will pursue early next year.
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