Will proposed wind farm in NJ harm Long Beach Island?

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With plans to build a giant wind farm off the coast of New Jersey, new questions are being asked about where the massive turbines will sit in the ocean.

According to Bob Stern, the head of the LBI Coalition for Wind Without Impact, one of the main wind power project sites is believed to be 9 miles off the coast of Long Beach Island, which would mean 357 turbines, each over a thousand. feet high, will be clearly visible from the shore, even in foggy conditions.

“Having them this close creates significant problems, you will have reductions in tourism, reductions in rentals, reductions in property values,” he said.

“It’s extremely disturbing not only for the residents who live here, but for all the hundreds of thousands of people who come here to see this seascape.”

People want something beautiful

He said people “want to see something beautiful and natural and they won’t be able to see it anymore” when they go to the ocean.

“There’s nowhere you can look to get a clear view of the ocean. There’s nowhere you can look to get a clear view of the sky,” he said.

wind turbines

Michael Betts, Getty Images

Problem for whales and birds

Stern said another problem is that the proposed wind farm site off the coast of LBI is right next to an area where the endangered North Atlantic right whale migrates.

“Underwater noise [from the turbines] will now permeate their entire migration corridor with levels that the federal government believes will disrupt their behavior,” he said.

He noted that another serious issue is that the proposed wind farm will be in the middle of the flyway used by migratory birds trying to get to IBL nesting areas.

He also expressed concern that the Ministry of Defense has labeled part of the wind farm project area an exclusion zone.

Will the wind farm have an impact on national security?

Stern said repeated requests for clarification on this matter have been made to DOD but no responses have been forthcoming.

He also pointed out that when these types of projects are carried out in other countries, the wind turbines are placed at least 30 miles into the ocean, and sometimes up to 50 miles.

Stern, who served as the former director of the federal Department of Energy’s environmental compliance office, said his group filed a federal lawsuit to stop the wind farm from being located so close to LBI.

Sean GallupGetty Images

Sean GallupGetty Images

He said he tried to arrange a meeting with the Murphy administration to discuss ideas for alternative sites, but never heard from anyone.

A request for comment was made to the governor’s office but there was no immediate response Wednesday.

The LBI Coalition for Zero-Impact Wind is hosting a wind farm presentation at the LBI Museum in Beach Haven at 7:30 p.m. Thursday evening, July 28. For more information, visit savelbi.org.

David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at [email protected]

Click here to contact an editor about a comment or correction for this story.

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