Saturday, March 15, 2008

MMS Public Hearing for Cape Wind in Boston

I attended the Cape Wind hearings again on Thursday, March 13 at the University of Massachusetts, Harbor Campus. The points of argument continued to sharpen. A pleasing development was that Sue Reed of Conservation Law Foundation spoke specifically in rebuttal of some claims of the Save Our Sound group. I think that this development may mark a beginning of people not just talking past each other, which might represent one conceivable means by which to fix the broken process that has been happening. After making my comments about aggressive campaigning at West Yarmouth, I found it interesting that there were signs indicating that people could not bring signs or placards in to the basketball arena where the hearings were being held.

Here is a picture of the proceedings. There was the usual low density of people near the front, and higher densities further back. It was not obvious when I entered about a half hour into the proceedings, but the pro-CapeWind people were on the far side bleachers, and the anti-CapeWind people were on the near side bleachers. In West Yarmouth there were clusters but much more mixing. I counted 230 attendees on the "Pro" side, and 118 on the "Anti" side. I recognized quite a few people on each side who had been at the West Yarmouth public hearing, and I heard at least one speaker refer to having been at the Martha's Vineyard public hearing. It would be interesting to know more about how many people in attendance simply went to most or all of the public hearings.

I am working on a newspaper article about the hearings. This post will get longer but the newspaper article, a business meeting, and tomorrow's session with Congressman Ed Markey have my first priority.

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