Falmouth, Massachusetts in November of 2020 approved the first step for an offshore wind company to construct high voltage alternating current (HVAC) onshore export cables.
The proposed cables will be buried through a dense residential area of Falmouth Heights and the beach.
The town hired contractors to do draft studies on noise at around 110 decibels from the massive power substation and electric magnetic fields up to 500 milligauss (Mg) directly above the buried cables.
In January of 2022 local residents demanded public input and answers about the negotiations
In March of 2022, the town agreed to a meeting that was not held until three months later on June 8, 2022.
Just prior to the June meeting the onshore cable voltage plan was changed to high voltage direct current (HVDC).
In July 2021 the Falmouth Select Board discussed the annual strategic planning which requires members to agree that they must prioritize clear and public communication and education among members of the board and with the larger Falmouth community.
Miscommunication, if you call it that, between Falmouth’s various boards and committees and the public has historically been an issue. The onshore wind cables are now just a miscommunication?
The public was introduced to a brand new plan after almost two years of negotiations between the town and offshore wind contractors? What happened between March and June of 2022?
To date, there are very few high-voltage direct-current (HVDC) transmission systems operating in North America. There are no health studies done for the direct current lines as there is almost none in existence in the United States.
When any cable gets between 220,000 and 345,000 volts they are referred to as (HVDE) high voltage dirty electricity.
In a 1980 survey of one HVDC power line called the "Minnesota Landowner Health Perceptions Survey" 35% of the respondents said they had suffered adverse health effects that they attributed to the HDVC power line.
An epidemiologic study was not conducted on the residents. This study and investigation could have compared two or more groups of people who are alike except for one factor, the 400,000-volt high voltage direct current power line.
Today there are no epidemiologic studies for HVDC in the United States or for the Town of Falmouth.
Nothing to see here? Give us a break!
Note # 1 In 2010 and 2012 two wind turbines were installed at the wastewater treatment plant by the town without permits. Neighbors and property owners filed multiple lawsuits and appeals, and both of the turbines were shut down by the courts.
Town meeting voters approved an article requesting that the town pay $2.5 million to dismantle them. The town will also pay millions in debt related to the turbines.
The wind turbines will be dismantled around August 1, 2022, and the electric permits to cut the power cables have been issued.
Note # 2 The Massachusetts Clean Water Trust, May 4, 2022, authorized the acceptance of a lump-sum payment of not less than $975,000 from the Town of Falmouth in exchange for the cancellation of the debt of the town to the Trust under the Loan Agreement No. CWSG-09-36 dated January 22, 2010, as amended.