New friend buoys power line resistance

The Columbia Paper
Thursday, 27 February 2014 12:15

OMI–County residents seeking to minimize the impact of proposed high voltage power lines through as many as seven local communities enlisted a prominent new ally this week with the announcement by the Preservation League of New York State that the county’s cultural and historic resources have been added to the league’s list of “Seven to Save.”

The designation was announced Monday, February 24, to more than 50 people gathered at The Fields at Omi sculpture park visitors center in the Town of Ghent. League President Jay DiLorenzo said that being on the list signifies that valuable resources are threatened and his statewide organization will provide technical support and possibly some financial aid to the local effort to preserve irreplaceable assets.

The most immediate issue involving power lines is the proposal by the utility NYSEG, New York State Electric and Gas, to run new line 11.5 miles through Ghent to provide a backup source of electricity to communities further south in the county. The plan was introduced almost two years ago and is currently before the state Public Service Commission, which must determine whether the line is necessary and, if it is, whether NYSEG’s technical plan is the best way to accomplish the task.

A local non-profit group called Protect Ghent has embraced an alternative approach using lower voltages on conventional utility poles. read more

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