Save Ontario Shores (SOS) has requested New York’s Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES) should extend the deadline for additions in green energy regulations that would make it easier to push aside grassroots opposition.
Vice President at Save our Shores, Kate Kremer, believes these regulatory changes aim to steamroll dissenting opinion now and in the future. She remarked, “Developers with current applications for projects, including Apex’s Heritage Wind in Barre, are taking steps to quickly move this new project-friendly regulatory system. For rural communities it is a new process that is hopelessly stacked against them.”
State Senator George Borrello (R) is in opposition to these new regulations. He believes the state has overwhelmingly ignored local cries for a halt to this process, particularly during a pandemic. “We’ve performed our due diligence; we’ve exercised our rights as outlined in Article X. The new regulations will strip us of those rights,” said Borello, adding, “These rules are designed to fast-track renewable energy projects by removing localities and their vetting processes from decision-making.”
Current industrial energy proposals are spread throughout this part of Western New York, with companies approaching Hartland, Barre, Royalton, Lockport and Cambria, amongst others. Altogether, these projects would account for changes in thousands of acres to local farmland, possibly, for generations to come. If these proposals get through, many area residents assert the farmland built upon would be destroyed by heavy metals and other contaminants, in addition to the area’s visual façade and greenspaces changing drastically.