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The Massachusetts National Guard has filed a site plan with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Air Force Space Command for review of 17 possible sites to locate wind turbines at the Massachusetts Military Reservation (MMR) on Cape Cod.

The wind turbine initiative reflects the commitment of both the state and the U.S. military to increase the use of clean energy and achieve a greater level of energy independence.

"While we are just in the initial stages of this project, the goal is to attract new missions by lowering utility costs and thus reducing MMR's carbon footprint," says State Senate President Therese Murray. "If we are able to reach that goal, it will be a tremendous benefit to the communities surrounding the base and Cape Cod as a whole."

The National Guard and the U.S. Coast Guard, both located at the MMR, have worked with the state's Executive Offices of Public Safety and Security and Energy and Environmental Affairs on the renewable energy initiative, which supports Gov. Deval Patrick's goal of 2,000 MW of wind power statewide by 2020.

Within the 22,000 acres of MMR, about 17 possible sites for 400-foot wind turbines have been identified. The feasibility of each site will be reviewed in accordance with FAA and Space Command requirements. The sites submitted for review were identified through an initial analysis by the military and state of various factors, to include wind resource, impact to base operations and training, and proximity to the airfield and base and residential housing.

After FAA review, the remaining wind turbine sites deemed feasible will go through another round of military review to closely assess current and future military mission compatibility. A request for proposals will then be issued.

Proposals will undergo analysis of possible impacts to the environment and residential areas on and near the base. The Massachusetts National Guard, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs will continue to inform and involve the community throughout the process to develop a proposal for wind turbines at the MMR.

SOURCE: Massachusetts National Guard



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