Sep 21, 2010

If you love the Gulf of Maine...Hurry!

Help stop the federal rollback of  Maine's just-passed state law protecting Mainers' commercial  fishing grounds from ocean wind farm sprawl. Read the below and act! Write the federal ocean wind energy agency and become an interested party now.  Or forever be a bystander.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) has come to Maine and is determined to force the state to re-write its new state law protecting Maine commercial fishermen from windmills encroachment within ten miles of shore. If BOEMRE has its way, industrial windfarms will begin filling the view - as in these simulated windfarms 5 and more miles offshore) If you can spend a few minutes reading this post, browsing its links and emailing and telephoning the on the list below, you will help derail the rush by that agency to "expedite" windfarm leasing off the Maine coast.
Click on the map here to see what fishing grounds would be exposed to wind mills if every location more than three miles out is threatened with being 'expedited". Click on a fishing ground on that map to learn its distance from shore. For frame of reference, Enoch's Shoal, the dot just below Mount Desert Island, is three miles from shore. If the feds have their way, every fishing ground further from shore than that will be open for exploitation, with monopole windmills pounded into the seafloor, a la the Cape Wind model on Horseshoe Shoal. The empty squares in the map are the deepwater offshore locations where the UMaineDeepCwind Consortium looks to set up its floating arrays of turbines over the next decade

Read this one page pdf. It is an action alert and summary for the fishing industry on this state/federal ocean windmill issue.

Read the 2 page draft federal/ State Offshore Energy Charter and related one page documents supplied by BOEMRE at the interagency meeting, These are the tools the federal agency is using to pressure Maine into abandoning its ten mile buffer against industrial wind and allowing offshore windmills as close as three miles from shore


Contact the following people. The ones with asterixes were at the September 14th interagency meeting. (full list of meeting participants here)

Tell them that for the reasons above, you want the Maine legislature to review the proposed federal/state charter before the state takes any action on it. Further, if the charter does get signed, you want the legislature to require hearings BEFORE any state agency provides maps to the federal agency surrendering fishing grounds between three and ten miles of the coast to the wind energy industry.

Contact them now. As many as possible. Otherwise the federal/state charter will be rushed through - and ocean wind turbines will be expedited!

* Governor Baldacci (207) 287-3531

* Karin Tilberg, Governor's Sr. Policy AdvisorK 207/287-3531  Baldacci's point person on the ocean wind issue

* Hannah Pingree Speaker of House(207) 867-0966(h)  Reps and island with many fishermen Aware of how angry people get about windpower. Won't put it before the fishermen.

Senator Chris Rector 354-6571 Marine Resources Committee - district is richest lobster ground in Maine.

Representative Bruce MacDonald (207) 633-0570 (h) bmacdon@roadrunner.comHis district is lower Midcoast Maine including islands heavily dependent on groundfishery, shrimp and scallop and lobster fisheries that would be inpacted

Aditi Mirani, Federal offshore wind coordinator for Maine. (703) Mirani just completed setting up the Maryland ocean wind task force Here is her powerpoint presentation from the Maryland interagency meeting. (Almost identical to the one at the Belfast meeting on September 14th)

* Also contact YOUR state legislators, and our federal delegation Snowe, Collins, Pingree and Michaud.

Tell them to make BOMRE back off. Tell them the Maine legislature worked hard last session to finalize LD 1810 to protect the state's commercial fishermen from windpower encroachment on their fishing grounds. Tell them it is wrong to let the federal government just walk in, throw out this Maine state law and re-open a more than a hundred fishing grounds to ocean windfarm leasing.

Tell them Instead let's have the Maine legislature and the fishermen take a hard look at the plan first. And reject the plan if its not good for the state. NO rush to judgement.

Friends, a few words go a long way. A quick e-note and voicemail to the above, especially if you cc the whole bunch together, will help drive action the way it needs to go.

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