Page 5 - Mid America Boating - August 2021 issue
P. 5

struction proceeds on Icebreaker.
                                                                                                                         Perhaps the OPSB is finally tuning into
                                                                                                                       citizens responses. Recently, the OPSB shot
                                                                                                                       down a developer's plan to build a massive  5
                 Ohio Gov. DeWine                                                                                      wind field development in Sandusky and  [
                                                                                                                       Seneca counties.  The proposed “Republic
                                                                                                                       Wind Farm” would have included up to 50
                 signs bill adding                                                                                     turbines. Referring to the denial, Jenifer
                                                                                                                       French, chairperson of the OPSB said that
                 local input on                                                                                        substantial public opposition, plus geologi-
                                                                                                                       cal concerns, were deciding factors for her
                                                                                                                       opposition to the project.           MID-AMERICA BOATING
                                                                                                                         By comparison, while the Republic Wind
                 turbine projects                                                                                      Farm included 50 turbines and Icebreaker
                                                                                                                       off Cleveland’s lakefront is just 6-8 turbines,
                                                                                                                       it’s known that the real objective of
                                                                                                                       Icebreaker is to trigger up to 1,600 more tur-
                                                                                                                       bines, essentially industrializing our pre-
                                                                                                                       cious Lake Erie.
                                                                                                                         While Icebreaker has been conditionally
                                                                                                                       approved by the OPSB, it must still produce
                                                                                                                       acceptable wildlife mitigation plans among  ]     AUGUST 2021
                                                                                                                       other requirements. So, it isn’t a certainty
                                                                                                                       and increased vocal public opposition to
                                                                                                                       the destruction of Lake Erie with turbines
      By Norm Schultz                         More specifically, project developers  ty commissioners’ vote – they’d be grandfa-  could still generate a favorable decision to
                                            must notify county commissioners and  thered in. And Icebreaker has already been  protect our most valuable natural resource
        In a new chapter of the ongoing debate  trustees at least 90 days before filing an  conditionally approved.    and withdraw the permit. As State
      over building wind turbines in Ohio,  application with the Ohio Power Siting  In addition, the Cuyahoga County   Representative Bill Seitz so aptly stated on
      Governor Mike DeWine recently signed a bill  Board. Moreover, it also requires the addi-  Commissioners generally bought into the  the floor of the Ohio House:
      passed by the legislature that, for the first  tion of a county commissioner and a  Icebreaker project years ago when develop-  “They (the developers) think it’s just fine
      time, makes it mandatory that developers  trustee to the OPSB while reviewing any  ers claimed it would produce hundreds of  to put these monstrosities all over Ohio,
      involve local residents – not just the little-  local project.              area jobs. We now know it won’t! Moreover,  to create 600-foot-tall structures with
      known Ohio Power Siting Board – in the  The question remains, then, what impact  the Commissioners accepted the develop-  moving parts where the blades break and
      process of approving turbine developments.  will this latest legislative action have on the  er’s  paid  consultant’s  report  that  fires start and the birds and bats are
        Essentially, the law now allows county  pending construction of the “Icebreaker  Icebreaker would cause minimal harm to  chopped to smithereens!”
      commissioners to reject a particular wind  Wind” project off Cleveland’s lakefront  Lake Erie. We now know that was nothing  Not in our Lake Erie! MAB
      turbine (or solar) project, ban such projects  which is facing growing opposition? Answer:  more than a smoke screen. A full inde-
      entirely, or carve out portions of the county  It’s uncertain, because some wind projects  pendent Environment Impact Statement  Norm Schultz is President Emeritus of the Lake Erie
      where those facilities could not be built.   pending now wouldn't need to face a coun-  should now be undertaken before any con-  Marine Trades Association.

                                                                                                                             Sandusky, Ohio

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