Woodstock Site Plan Review

Page 15 , Number  18

Noise: the proposed development shall not raise noise levels to the extent that abutting and/or nearby residents are adversely affect.

A)    The maximum permissible sound pressure level of any continuous, regular or frequent or an intermittent source of sound produced by any activity shall be limited by the time period and land use which it abuts listed below. Sound levels shall be measured at 4 feet above the ground at the property boundary of the source.

Sound pressure level limits using the sound equivalent level of one hour (leq 60 measured in dB(a) scale)

 7:00 am to 10:00pm, residential     55 dB(a)

10:00pm to 7:00am residential        45 dB(a)

B)    Noise shall be measured by a meter set on the A-weight response scale, fast response. The meter shall meet the American National Standards (ANSA SI-4-1961) American standard specification for general purpose sound meters.




TESTIMONY OF LEOLA BALLWEBER         February 8, 2012


My name is Leola Ballweber, I live in Woodstock, Maine.The town of Woodstock Planning board used the DEP guide lines for sound, yet, approved a waiver to raise the sound levels.

The wind project was appealed at the town level, DEP level, which Warren Brown suggested a NRO for 3 turbines starting at 7pm and adding 3 more from 10pm till 7am, 6 of 10 turbines would be restricted during this time and then it was off to the BEP. After the Supreme Court case was dropped, only 20% chance in the citizen’s favor. Patriot Renewable petitioned for the NRO to be removed. My understanding is that it was granted and the NRO was removed.

What was learned was that the state does not have regulations in place to protect the citizens from the unique infra-sound projected by industrial wind turbines.

The science is there to prove it exists, yet it is the citizens who are left to protect themselves.


(Leola Ballweber)


The wind industry does and will not admit that these machines on top of Maine’s mountains make noise.

The sound maps that are computer generated are flawed and incorrect in these projects.

Bayroot, LLC owns land that is part of the Spruce Mount Wind Project, leases were giving. As soon as the Spruce mountain wind project began construction, Bayroot, LLC began removing timber between abutting properties and the wind project. If, the abutters had taken some consolation in the filtering of sound through the trees, it was made clear, it was not to be. Irish Family Logging Company came in and literally stripped the land. They paid the fines for their actions and continued to strip the 1000’s of acres around the Spruce Mountain Wind Project.

It is clear that the wind company, land owners of the logging properties, walk hand in hand on these wind projects.

There is no consideration for the ECHO Effect from the surrounding ridges and sound traveling down into the valleys.

It has been made clear that this is not a time for emotions. It is clear that the distress felt by the victims of these projects will not be considered.

I present to you some facts from Woodstock:

There are over 90 abutting properties to the Spruce Mountain wind project. Most of those are seasonal residents. The figures that I am submitting to you are taken from the Woodstock Map/Lot Index dated Tuesday, January 2008. I checked with the town manager and he assured me that this was the latest, up to date version.

Concord Pond Area-

  • 75 properties,
  • Towns value for buildings and land, $4,316,090.
  • 1 local household considered year round resident of Woodstock

Shagg Pond Area-

  • 67 properties,
  • Towns value for buildings and land $4,507,390.
  • 3 local households considered year round residents of Woodstock

Cushman and Perkins Valley Road-

  • 54 properties,

Town’s value for buildings and land, $$3,241,030.

  • 29 residents considered year round residents of Woodstock.

The Combined total,

  • properties within 1.5 miles, 196
  • property values to the town- $12,064,510.00
  • The number of residential property owners considered year round residents- 33

 It is clear that the properties involved are mostly seasonal owners who pay taxes and buy groceries when they come to Woodstock. They may be considered seasonal citizens, yet, spend summers, go skiing, snowmobiling or just get away from their busy lives on weekends, year round. They have no vote at town meetings and could not participate in the decision of this wind

(Leola Ballweber)


project coming to their neighbor. Now they live with the blade flicker and the Whooosh Whooosh of industrial wind turbines. The wind turbines came to them and they are given a short list of alternatives in dealing with the noise. Please consider the impact this will have on the other small towns, who have or will have wind projects come to their town. Our small townships are now being put in the position no matter what they decide, for or against a wind ordinance; they can expect challenges from both sides of the issue. Law suits are costly, timely and can at times be indecisive in the outcome. (Moot) When the industrial wind projects are built in Canton, Carthage, Dixfield, Peru, Sumner and phase two of The Spruce Mountain Wind Project is put into motion, these figures, one town at a time, will add up.

I believe that the Maine Legislature put us in this position of Fight or Flee and I believe the legislation should send a strong message to the wind industry. It is time for educating yourselves on the dangers of infra sound and making regulations that protect the citizens of Maine. Distance is the only control factor when dealing with this industry. I believe that the BEP’s intents are good, but feel that the 42 dB(a) is still too high, yet, it is a beginning.

Industrial wind turbines have a unique sound, they are a unique industry and the citizens of Maine deserve to be protected to the fullest from industrial wind’s noise pollution. I have been following the PUC with First Wind and see a pattern with the challenge to ethics, along with morals. Business is business and we should all go by the same rules, with the same penalties. They say that Enron is dead, yet, we are still dealing with the ghost of Enron,

There are other alternatives to choose from and Maine is already 30% renewable energy. Remove the cap on hydro and let the waters run. In these economic times, we should be consolidating, rather than wasting federal dollars on rich man’s projects. The down fall is that until someone tells the rich guy, he can’t walk all over the little guy, there will be casualties. The seasonal residents, tax payers and abutters to the Spruce Mountain Wind project are caught in the cross fire of this warring power for dominance on Maine’s mountains.

Thank-you, for the time. and the opportunity to speak today.



 Thank-you C. M. for your assistance in formatting.

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Comment by Leola R. Ballweber on February 9, 2012 at 2:00pm

As a citizen, I can not support 42 dB(a). I know and acknowledge the hard work it has taken to get to this point,yet, I will not be satisfied with this tidbit of hope. The repercussions are still high on this issue.


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."


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