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Wednesday, March 28, 2018


Ontario Bays Initiative, Inc. (OBI) is a non-profit land trust organization
dedicated to the voluntary conservation and thoughtful stewardship
of undeveloped, private land in Jefferson County, New York.

Today the Ontario Bays initiatiave sent a letter to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) concerning the Galloo Island Industrial Wind project proposed by Apex Clean Energy.
OBI email cover note to the NYSPSC
Ontario Bays Initiative is highly concerned regarding potential serious damage to critical natural resources within our service area.
It must be recognized that islands in Lake Ontario represent a very scarce resource, located along a major bird migration corridor in the Great Lakes. We are fully opposed to the construction of the Big Galloo Island Industrial Wind Complex.

OBI Letter
Ontario Bays Initiative’s statement on the proposed
Big Galloo Island Industrial Wind Complex

The Board of Directors of Ontario Bays Initiative wishes to place
the following items on the record in regard to this proposed project:

• OBI is a non-profit land trust serving the New York portion
of the northeastern Lake Ontario basin.
• Our missions are the protection and management of biodiversity
as well as the creation and maintenance of open space areas
within our region.
• The proposed project is located in the core of our service area
and these large turbines will have scenic and other impacts on
much of the area.
• While we favor thoughtful and responsible development of
renewable energy alternatives, such developments must be
carefully located. Projects in or adjacent to the Great Lakes
have significant potential to impact both ecological and
economic resources to an unacceptable degree.

Thus it is resolved that:

• It must be recognized that large scale renewable energy
development can transform sensitive rural landscapes into
industrialized sacrifice zones. Such transformation has
widespread consequences for wildlife, natural communities,
and human beings living in these regions.

• We are concerned that this project poses unacceptable risks
and potential damage to our region as follows:
◦◦ Islands in Lake Ontario, and indeed in many of the Great Lakes,
represent a very limited, scarce resource. Proposed transformation
of Big Galloo Island into an industrial site is very unwise.
A report by the US National Parks Service recommends
protection of all islands as parks. We strongly support such wise
use and urge New York State to follow their own open space plan
and protect the island as parkland.
◦◦ The location of this project next to the large colonial waterbirds colonies
on adjacent Little Galloo Island makes it problematic at best.
The potential damage to the largest Caspian Tern colony
in the eastern Great Lakes and to the massive assemblage
of other waterbirds is simply not worth the risk. Placing a turbine array
in such a heavily used avian complex is unwise and irresponsible.
◦◦ This project lies along a major migration corridor for many species of birds.
The shores and waters of the Great Lakes concentrate migrants
moving through the region. Clearly placing large structures in or close
to the Lakes and along these flight lines is questionable practice
and should be avoided. The eastern Lake Ontario region hosts
one bird and three bats on federal lists, as well as a myriad of state listed
species. Placing an industrial wind complex amidst this avian flyway
must not be permitted.
◦◦ Our region’s economy is heavily dependent on tourism related
to the area’s scenic beauty. Preservation of that beauty is one of the
considerations of our work. The economic impacts of large scale industrial
development in sensitive scenic areas, including shorelines and islands,
could be severe. The cost/benefit ratio of projects at these sites
to the regional economy and ecology is not favorable.
The energy gains of this project do not come close to counterbalancing
the potential costs. Our communities are greatly impacted by these economic
realities and any disruptions are very undesirable.

For these and many other reasons not stated here be it resolved
Ontario Bays Initiative is opposed to the development of an
Industrial wind complex on Big Galloo Island.

Statement approved by OBI board. July 17, 2017
An Eastern Lake Ontario Conservancy
Ontario Bays Initiative, Inc. P.O. Box 117, 12030 NYS Rte 12E
Chaumont, New York 13622
(315) 649-6045

Board of Directors
Joel Block Vicki Hanley Sally Hirschey Urban Hirschey
Chairperson Jim LaPlante Vice Chairperson & Land Steward
Lee Ellsworth Secretary Tracy Valentine Treasurer Joan Treadwell Woods
Consultant Gerry Smith Executive Director Julie K. Covey

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