Idea re: windmills on Nantucket Sound [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Idea re: windmills on Nantucket Sound

06-11-2002, 07:55 PM
A while ago I posted about an alternative to the current interest in putting windmills on the shoals on Nantucket Sound - Otis AFB.

Here is a huge chunk of the Cape behind fences with a large amount of real estate unused for the most part. Wind may not be what it is on the water, but it is still significant and what was not exploited could be made up in lower cost and greater deployment.

I am not so concerned with the visual pollution, or navigational hazard - I am thinking of the total disruption of the ecosystem on the shoals.

Putting windmills over acres of habitat for all levels of organisms will disrupt the entire balance of the area. Shrimp, sand eels, flounder, all sorts of organisms will be subject to vibration, construction, visual deterrent, and other unnatural trauma that would render many square miles of shoals uninhabitable for the common chain of life as we know it.

Last I heard this project was going on in full force, I think we should do what we can to stop it.

What do people think, putting windmills behind the fences at Otis worth campaigning for?

Don't get me wrong I am all for clean power, but not by putting the windmills on the shoals out in the sound while we have a land mass that is so large it changes the entire road system on the upper cape.

Read more: HERE (

the wave action generators southeast of Nantucket seem less likely to distrupt the ecosystem, but I could be mistaken the windmills are targeted for the heart of the area between the Vineyard, South Cape, Mid Cape, Monomoy and Nantucket groups are already opposed due to impact on bird and sea mammal effect, I am equally concerned about effect on marine organisms that rely on the shoal as key spawning and living habitat one of the many opposition groups

People are good at taking sides and throwing problems at each other... I think my proposal to use Otis provides a reasonable compromise for clean power and smart use of space without threatening the shoal habitat.


06-12-2002, 09:06 AM
20000 acres of gov. land. I live right next to Otis, about as close as you can get, and I'd be all for this location over the shoals idea. I agree that the marine life would be subject to impacts that we have not even thought of yet and the access to the area will no doubt be highly restricted once the towers are in place.
Otis is allready a restricted area with security in place. We need CLEAN sources of energy, but not at the risk of loss of habitat, and with the height of the towers and Otis's location and elevation I don't believe the variation of wind could be that much.
I'm with you on this one Juro, let's start up a lively discussion and see where it leads!

Dble Haul
06-12-2002, 09:16 AM
This is another opportunity for us to use the power of the internet. If we generate enough interest in this, we could generate an electronic petition online. Very recently, a group in CT circulated the address of an online petition that anglers could sign. It had to do with public access rights at the Enfield Dam area of the CT River, an area that has been under dispute between Amtrack and the public. It's a very secure way to pool resources of a community. Once the petition is signed, a confirmation e-mail is sent to the signer who mails back to confirm the signature. This prevents bogus signings and padding the numbers.

Of course I'm not as well versed in software as many of you, and I don't know how feasible this would be. But the petition mentioned above did cause the matter to be tabled to another meeting. I think that Amtrack underestimated the power of the people and the hundreds of signatures on the petition.

Just a suggestion, I'm sure there are others.

06-12-2002, 09:56 AM
What are the impacts? How can a big piling with a tower on it disrupt much? How can you support wave action generators over a wind tower when the wave action is actually disrupting currents?
And finally, is there usable wind on Otis?
We need more data. I'm leary about objecting to ANY clean power alternatives. The current administration is doing ZERO to lower our dependence on Arabian oil. In these times it's a crime not to. While Mr. Bush has showed great leadership in the war, his Texas oil roots have kept him hostage to old stale thinking as far as new energy technology.


06-12-2002, 10:00 AM
One other thought: Let's all get into our SUVs and drive over to the Anti-Wind Tower meeting. Just think of the hypocrisy. And who is building 2 story foyers in their 3000+ sq. ft. homes with no regard to energy use. Americans are not yet serious about energy.


John Desjardins
06-12-2002, 11:03 AM
In my mind, the potential problems with the windmills on the shoals are

1. Damage to the shoals by the construction companies. Do not underestimate what a lowbid contractor can do to disrupt life.
2. The effect of low frequency vibrations on animal life.
3. Visual impact/ blocked access to public waters due to security concerns.

Locating the windmills on Otis AFB would eliminate #1, change the organisms affected by #2, probably still have some visual impact, and minimize the blocked access.

Is the Air National Guard still using Otis and if so what are the rules for tall objects near airports?

06-12-2002, 11:15 AM
Still forming an opinion on this but I don't think this will be blocked on environmental grounds. I suspect the most solid evidence will indicate the new structure wil result in a net enhancement of marine life. This issue came up at a CCA meeting and a prominant Woods Hole scientest suggested something to the effect, (this is my intrepretation and I leave any names out because I could have gotten it wrong) that if this was to be fought it would have to be fought on the bases of aestethics rather than any environmental issues. Of course the other issue is access (security concerns). To me, aesthetics and access are valid considerations because the site is smack dab in the middle of intense recreational usage and an area whose commerce is heavily reliant on recreation. Other than the aesthetic, access and commerce issues I aggree with Terry and tend to lean in favor.

06-12-2002, 11:36 AM
I would like to add one more item to JohnD's list; this one concerns me the Most.

(4) The presidence of using State (Federal?) waters for a Commercial Enterprise. Could this entire area be made "restricted" due to "security" concecerns (i.e., No Boat or Fishing)??