(AP) The Vermont Supreme Court on Friday, Oct. 19 rejected a
series of appeals filed by opponents of a wind-power project under
construction on Lowell Mountain.
In its decision, the court rejected a series of claims by the
towns of Albany and Craftsbury and a citizens group called the
Lowell Mountain Group that the utility-regulating Vermont Public
Service Board ignored evidence that the 21-turbine project would
generate noise levels that could be harmful to neighbors and that
it would despoil what was once a pristine area.
"Generally speaking, the board found that the project,
consistent with the expressed intent of the Legislature, would help
meet the region's need for renewable energy, provide an economic
benefit to the state in the form of jobs and tax revenues, and
provide (Green Mountain Power) and (the Vermont Electric
Cooperative) with a long-term source of stably priced power," said
the decision, written by Chief Justice Paul Reiber.
"The board explained that it had approved the project based on
these economic benefits and because the addition of a renewable
source of power in the region was consistent with the state's
legislated policy goals," the decision said.
Construction on the project began a year after the board issued
the final permit for the project, which is owned by Vermont's
largest and dominant electric utility Green Mountain Power. The
project is expected to be generating electricity soon.
Opponents argued the project despoils a natural area and creates
human health risks.
But the Supreme Court rejected those claims. The decision said
conditions imposed by the board are adequate to protect the