Voices From The Readers – July 28, 2023

Voices From The Readers – July 28, 2023

Offshore Wind An Environmental Disaster


Facts vs. emotion.

1. Turbines kill whales and birds.

2. They have a 17-year life at best.

3. Require expensive maintenance.

4. Mechanically they are unreliable and problematic.

5. This is NOT renewable energy.

6. The bigger, the less reliable.

7. Moving complicated parts operating in salt water…use your imagination.

8. The most expensive form of all energy.

9. Produce only 1 kwh/sq. meter. Lowest power density.

10. Huge space footprint.

11. Heavy carbon footprint to produce and install.

12. Cost of dismantling and scrap at the end of life undetermined.

Companies that build them are only after ridiculous tax credits. “Renewable is not always Green”. Look for the documentary “Juice” this fall.

John Fager
Ocean City


Electronic Signs A Waste, Visual Blight


The Mayor & City Council (M&CC)
of Ocean City continue to waste money. Now they want to spend nearly $550,000 for 14 double-sided electronic signs. That’s 28 new signs that will create more visual blight along the Boardwalk.
The problem stems from taking in more revenue from the room tax than the M&CC need for advertising. Instead of applying the newfound revenue for infrastructure needs, and items such as better wages for the Beach Patrol and seasonal police officers, they continue to waste money on advertising. When is it enough?
At the last election, the voters narrowly approved a petitioned ordinance that gave the M&CC the authority to
increase advertising. By a slim vote of 1,039 to 991, the voters gave the M&CC the green light to spend more on advertising. However, with that voter approval, which is hardly a mandate, came additional fiscal responsibility.
Thank you, Councilman Peter Buas for being the lone voice of dissent on this issue.
Vincent dePaul Gisriel, Jr.
Ocean City


Too Much Wind Rhetoric
I am often one of the biggest cheerleaders for the Mayor and Town Council. I recognize they have an important job and one that is often under appreciated. I believe in giving credit where credit is due. However, it is equally important to question them when they go down the wrong path. We have reached that point with the latest questionable actions against the proposed offshore wind development.
Like the Mayor and Council, I have reservations of the changing of the landscape that we all know and love. There is no doubt what has been described as a thumbnail size object on the horizon, would be a huge change. The question is whether or not these thumbnails that would be visible on clear days are worth the added clean energy that is promised. The discussion seems like it should be a rational one and decisions could be made by educated folks looking to do the right thing. Sadly, discussions regarding wind have digressed to the absurd. It is time we get back to the basics and start listening to each other and to science.
Many of the letters to this column have been so extreme, they lack any credibility. This is true for those on both sides of the issue. Hey, anti-wind folks: those who want the windmills DO happen to care if whales die. And you pro-wind folks need to realize that everyone who expresses a concern with the changing of the “viewshed” is not some climate change denying Luddite who lives under a rock. As is normally the case, removing the extremes on both sides, usually ends up with some commonsense resolutions that are beneficial to all.
The concern for me on the issue has been the Town’s latest move to spend $175,000 to SLR International, a European based outfit that the Town hopes will substantiate their claims about the detrimental effects of the proposed wind farm. At first glance, one may say that the Town is doing its due diligence on the matter and fully investigating the effects the wind farm would have on Ocean City. However, digging a tad deeper and by listening to Town Officials, it is just another attempt to halt the wind farm by any means necessary. And this latest move is costing the tax-payers in Ocean City $175,000.

To support giving $175,000 in tax payer dollars to SLR, Council Member Tony DeLuca is quoted as saying “There’s no amount of money that I wouldn’t approve not to see wind farms in Ocean City.” I am certainly not comfortable with Mr. DeLuca stating that the Town has unlimited funds to offer to any operation that will tell him what he wants to hear. And worse yet, the price of any future studies just went up astronomically because Mr. DeLuca is on record for saying we have endless funds to spend. This was really disappointing, especially from Mr. DeLuca who likes to consider himself a fiscal conservative.

Further disappointing are the statements made by City Manager Terry McGean, who I have always thought does an incredible job for the people of Ocean City. While supporting the $175,000 expense and mentioning some possible credible concerns of effects on the local horseshoe crab population, Mr. McGean really let the residents of the Town down with his final summation of the situation. He stated that if the $175,000 study were to show that the effects of a wind farm were not detrimental to Ocean City that the Town would be able to ignore the findings and just not share the results of the study with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management or the public.

This is unacceptable. It appears the Town is shopping for any entity that will back their claims of wind farms being harmful. The Town had to commit to spending $175,000 in taxpayer dollars and go all the way to England to find SLR who they hope will conclude that wind farms are bad. In life you usually get what you pay for, so there is no reason to assume that SLR will not come up with a few bad things to say about wind. $175,000 can buy a lot of doubt.

Let’s please stick to the facts and make informed decisions. Let’s spend taxpayer money wisely and let’s not substantiate our actions with the “ends justify the means” mentality. There is no excuse for spending unlimited taxpayer money on anything and the public certainly has a right to see the results of a $175,000 study even if those results do not meet the narrative of the anti-wind folks on the Council.
M. Scott Chismar
Ocean City


More Wind Studies Unnecessary
I was surprised when I learned that the Ocean City Council had voted to spend $175,000.00 on a study by SLR Consulting for review of the US Wind Construction and Operations Plan for the offshore wind farm to be located off the coast of Ocean City. My surprise comes from the fact that there are already studies (by the OSW Industry itself – including US Wind) regarding the impacts to the environment, sea life, commercial fishing, tourism, etc., of these wind farms. The studies clearly show a range of negative impacts (from minor to major) in all of these areas.
The studies are entitled:
1. Visual Impact Assessment May, 2022 Maryland Offshore Wind Project Prepared for US Wind, and
2. Ocean Wind I Offshore Wind Farm Draft Environmental Impact Statement June, 2022 authored by Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Office of Renewable Energy Programs
If I have access to these, then surely the Town of Ocean City does, too.
In addition, another foreign wind company, Orsted, has included in its literature reference to another study, The Effect of Offshore Wind Projects on Recreational Beach Use on the East Coast of the United States: Evidence from Contingent- Behavior Data, Elsevier, September, 2020, that reaches conclusions that would indicate that Cape May, N.J. may see a 15% decrease in tourism as a result of Orsted’s Ocean Wind projects.
Of course, as anyone can tell from my previous letters, in my opinion most of the negative impacts of OSW farms are just common sense. It hardly needs another study by another OSW connected entity.
Carol Frazier
64 Bramblewood Drive,
Ocean Pines, MD 21811
[email protected]