DEP hosts public meeting on proposed Hancock County wind project

AURORA, Maine (WABI) - Members of the public got the chance to weigh in on a proposed wind project that would be located in Hancock County Thursday night.

The Department of Environmental Protection hosted the meeting in Aurora at the Airline Community School.

The Weaver Wind Project would build 22 turbines at a cost of 145 million dollars.

The turbines would be located in Eastbrook and Osborn with an operations and maintenance building in Aurora.

Those in attendance spoke both for and against the project.

"What's the water quality impact going to be?" asked resident Darren Lord. "What's the wildlife impact going to be? I am very, very scared about all of those things. I would really ask the experts to take a step back because I don't think we are in any rush."

"In addition to the overall benefits of this clean, emissions free source of renewable energy the Weaver Wind Project also will have a positive environmental effect on the public access to Lower and Middle Lead Mountain Ponds as well as the Union River watershed," said area resident Jeff Rose.

"This is a place that already has two wind projects up and spinning and they've been very successful," said Deron Lawrence of Longroad Development. "The wind resource is very strong. The lands support winds in a good way. They are rural and there aren't many houses nearby. There aren't worries about sound and we find there are really low wildlife impacts as well."

The DEP Commissioner refused to answer questions about the proposed project both from people at the meeting and from TV5.

A final decision on the project will be made by May 17th.

If it is approved the hope is to begin construction this summer and complete it by next year.