Page: current (2/1/04 - present)
I will post any comments about the Fairwinds Proposals here. Please
keep your comments clean, brief, to the point, clear and unnasty.
Otherwise, they may not appear here. If the spellchecker finds a mistake
that makes sense, I will correct it. Also, please include your name
and part of town.
Let me know if you would prefer that I not include your name
and or community with your comment.
The most recent comments are first.
“Democracy works only because we all make an implied
social contract with each other to abide by the decisions of the majority.
If we ignored said agreements, deciding instead to pursue individual
agendas by dismissing our mutual responsibilities to each other and
instead focus principally on our own selfish wants and desires, then chaos
would rule the land. Implied societal contracts and trusting everyone to
honor those contracts are the fabric of civilization. Imagine if everyone
chose which side of the road they wanted to drive on because they didn't
agree with the rules. That might pose a problem; don’t you think?
It is understandable why
some might be upset at the majority decision and not want to let the LNG
issue pass. But claiming that Harpswell’s LNG voter turnout was remotely
tainted or impacted by the bomb threat stretches credibility to the
snapping point. After subtracting outdated deadwood names from the voting
rolls, about 80% of Harpswell voters who could vote, did vote. The last
U.S. Presidential election netted a 53.76% nationwide turnout; and that
was considered excellent. Harpswell’s numbers were roughly 26 percentage
points better than that.
Dismissing the petitioner’s
predictable self-justification for a revote, all that’s left is sour
grapes over the decision; which is what their petition is really about.
It’s okay to be angry. But
when people react on said base emotions, it requires society’s restraining
hand. Crying foul and petitioning to overturn after losing a vote isn't
being democratic; inversely, it's a gross violation of the common trust.
Hopefully, cool heads will
prevail in Harpswell’s situation. It’s time to move forward and away from
LNG. The majority of Harpswell has spoken. There is nothing to be gained,
and much to be lost, by entertaining this divisive topic any further.
Re Mere Point Launching
Ramp deal....there are supposedly something like 57 parking spaces for
boats w/trailers....a few more spaces for cars/kyacks....the powers that
be have discovered there isn't enough turn-around space for even
57....exaggeration or lack or knowledge seems to prevail in some cases,
such as Roberta Weil's comments.
I shuddered when I read the
quote in the paper from Debbie Levensailor that she knew within 15 minutes
that LNG was the right thing for Harpswell. It's a shame to see a
community so divided & so much ill will and misunderstanding.
We have a difficult situation
here also but right now I'm more concerned about what's going on in your
I have been reading these comments for quite
some time now and as the vote date draws near, I feel compelled to speak.
My family has owed land in Harpswell for almost 40 years. I'm not a
resident, so I can't vote, but Judy Woodman has stated it well. Take a
good hard look at what this will mean for the future and how it will
impact the lives of everyone, especially the families who lobster for a
living. Vote NO.
The town recently sent a letter asking for FairPlay and
other groups to disclose the specifics of their funding (even though this
is not required under Maine law). At the time of receiving the letter, we
were fully convinced that this was a political move by the Town, and was
an attempt to cast aspersions upon the two groups that have stepped up to
-- our group, and Fishing Families for Harpswell.
After the disgraceful selectmen's meeting of March 4, can
there now be any doubt that this was the case?
Here is the letter we delivered to the Town, which we had
hoped to be allowed to read at the Selectman's meeting on March 4. As we
all now know, the selectmen did not allow any public comment, and then
proceeded with their agenda of character assassination.
March 1, 2004
Town of Harpswell
PO Box 39
Harpswell, Maine 04079
Dear Ms. Eiane:
We are in receipt of your unprecedented letter dated
February 27, 2004 requesting information on the ³sources of support² for
our group, FairPlay for Harpswell. The Town is not empowered by any law,
ordinance or regulation to require this information. Per your
letter, the Selectmen of Harpswell have asked that we voluntarily submit
such information in a ³sealed envelope², which will be opened only if all
of the five ³groups²
(Fairwinds, Friends of Fairwinds, the pro-Fairwinds
fishermen, Fishing Families for Harpswell and FairPlay) submit sealed
While we applaud the fact the town is finally showing some
interest in our group though regrettably that interest does not extend to
basic facts of the Fairwinds project we will not be submitting any
information in a closed, sealed envelope. As you may know, our group has
objected strenuously to the Town conducting so much of the business of the
Fairwinds project in a closed door manner. We are tired of the secret
meetings, the back door maneuverings, the behind the scenes lobbying by
the Town and its officials. We refuse to conduct the business of our group
in a similar manner. In addition, two of the five groups included in this
request are Friends of Fairwinds and the group of fishermen supporting the
Fairwinds project. These groups, of course, have had to expend little in
the way of funds, due to the fact that Fairwinds seems to pay for any
advertising these groups conduct. We are more than happy to discuss our
sources of support in a public, not private manner and encourage others to
do likewise. I am extremely proud to say that our group has raised over
$100,000. This money has come from over 600 FairPlay supporters, mostly
Harpswell residents and a few small private businesses. No public
corporation has donated a dime, or one minute to our effort. Many have
stepped up and donated generously to help us inform the public about why
having a massive industrial LNG facility in our town is an irresponsible,
if not reprehensible, idea. Every cent of our funds have come from these
donations, and it is extremely gratifying that every time our group has
been in need of additional funding, every time we think that the
generosity of our supporters has run out, all we need to do is send out an
email, or make a few dozen phone calls, and the donations flood in. I
believe this is because the threat of this massive LNG project is so
serious, so threatening to our town and our way of life, that many people
have been motivated to give more than they can afford.
This money has come to us in many forms. From the hundreds
of people who have come to our two public suppers, often paying much more
than the $10 suggested donation. From people at the various town meetings,
coming up to FairPlay members with a $5 or $10 dollar bill. From non-
resident taxpayers, who are deeply disturbed at the fact that they only
found out about the Fairwinds project when our group sent them a letter
letting them know about it. From small businesses in and out of town. From
fishermen, from commuters, from children, from abutters. From people in
all parts of town Harpswell Neck, Cundy¹s Harbor. Orrs Island. Bailey
Island. Great Island. We have also received donations from non-Harpswell
residents. People in other towns are threatened by this inappropriate
project, and some have donated to our group.
You also ask for an accounting of contributed goods and
services. It is difficult to even know where to start on this list,
because there have been so many who have contributed their time, goods and
services. And, I¹m sure that any accounting of goods and services will
leave many out, because literally hundreds have stepped forward.
Among those contributing services:
Two different Harpswell residents have
donated 80 T-shirts Scores of Harpswell residents donated food for our
suppers, and worked tirelessly at our suppers Several stores have also
contributed food for public suppers A broad group of Harpswell lobstermen
who have contributed hundreds of lobsters for suppers 50-60 Harpswell
residents have donated canvassing services Dozens who have
contributed supplies pens, paper, material for signs, food for meetings
etc. Several area artists who have contributed photography, painting, etc.
Several area residents have contributed communications services
copywriting, design, copy services, and the like A Harpswell resident
contributed 20 sheets of plywood, paint, and brushes for signs Six
different residents who have donated their time to help produce our
various HCTV shows Dr. Lee Grodzins donated his time to discuss
security issues Dr. James Fay donated his time to discuss LNG safety
issues McCabe & Duval Advertising has donated design and copy services for
ads, mailers, signs, buttons, web site Transit ID of Portland has donated
web programming services A non-resident Harpswell taxpayer has donated web
maintenance services Finally, our supporters have donated their expertise
and thousands of hours to our efforts
In summary, the groundswell of support we have received
from Harpswell residents and concerned citizens - literally hundreds of
different individuals - has been incredible, and humbling. And
telling. Our group, along with Fishing Families for Harpswell, another
citizen-supported group, has born the burden of not only opposing the
financial might and seemingly endless resources of TransCanada and Conoco
Phillips, but also of opposing the Town Government of Harpswell, and
the three Selectmen who are working every for a Yes vote on March 9th.
Every day our all-volunteer group is working tirelessly to
support the voices of the concerned citizens of our town who
collectively have no corporate deep pockets to depend upon and no
voice in the Town Government on this issue. We are working for them every
day against Fairwinds, and
those seeking to turn our town into an industrial zone.
We are all extremely proud and honored to do this work.
We will not stop this work until Fairwinds is turned away once and for
all. Once that task is accomplished, we will put this energy and
commitment to work in finding more appropriate uses for the fuel depot,
and more creative, imaginative, and effective solutions to Harpswell¹s
FairPlay for Harpswell
"Moreover, the younger fishermen might consider their own
futures. Fishing is less attractive as one gets older and develops
arthritic or mechanical problems with one's hands, wrists, elbows and
shoulders. A good paying job in town might be attractive."
The arrogance of the above quote is astounding. In her
unrelenting effort to get the Big Gas Plant built in Harpswell, this woman
will stop at nothing. We already know that she has been in contact with
TransCanada since April 2002, and now she is demeaning those who make
their living from the sea.
Message to Roberta -- Fishermen are not morons. They can
see right through this.
Did it ever occur to this woman that many fishermen might
prefer earning their living out on the water versus making a living in a
big gas plant?
Her arrogance is amazing.
Burr, Sorry to hear of how you were treated at the
meeting on Saturday. There's no excuse. The forum can be pretty
brutal too. I hope you continue your input - yours is a nice and
reasoned voice. You will be missed. By the way, your "John Loyd and
Roberta Weil" thread was very well done... Only a few more days, and
hopefully this mess will become a bad memory.
First I want to commend you for all of your hard and
time-consuming work in keeping this web page current...it is a real
service for all of us who are trying to get as much information as
possible on the LNG issue. I wanted to say to those who are still
undecided (are there any out there?) that I feel there is only one
overriding issue at stake here, and the fishermen who are opposed to
this project have repeated it over and over again. If you would not
want this plant located in your neighborhood, please do not vote to put
it in some else's backyard. None of us can predict the future impact of
this project, financially, environmentally, or just as an ongoing
divisive issue at every town meeting for the next 50 years. It comes
down to a matter of respect for those who will be looking at it, hearing
it, and fearing it because of where they live.
One more question to Burr: is it possible to include the
program schedule each day for Channel 14? Some have told me that it is
available if you call the station. I note that they are lax in
pre-publishing what is going to be on each afternoon and evening, and I
like to catch any new programming that will be on between now and March
9th. Again, thanks!
Note: You can often
find a schedule for HCTV at the Anchor Community Forum which is
here. At the Forum choose the
last page and you will probably find the schedule at or near the bottom. Please remember schedules can
change by the moment or hour or...
How disgusting can the situation get before
someone speaks out? I am speaking about Gordon Weil's suggestion that all
parties, either for or against his pet project disclose their financial
My suggestion is that Gordon Weil disclose
HIS financial statement for the year 2003, and Jim Knight and Lee Theberge
can do so as well. I think Gordon's would lift a few eyebrows in town.
Where does he get off on all of this? I had
believed that the selectmen were presenting the proposal to the Town for
our approval, or disapproval. Now that they are engaged in openly
promoting this project it is obvious that there is something way out of
line in their process. Hopefully, the real truth will come out some day
Burr, Thank you for including Friends of Fairwinds in the
list of those you've contacted regarding this issue. I think it's vital
for everyone to have the opportunity to voice their opinions on such an
important issue as the fantastic, beneficial Fairwinds proposal and lease.
Through your website, you have indeed provided us with that opportunity.
I wish we all felt comfortable commenting on your website,
but some do not for various reasons. I encourage everyone to exercise
their freedom of speech. Public comment and debate contribute much toward
a healthy democracy.
I do not agree with some of the points you have made in
your statement to the Selectmen. However, you have the right to speak your
I understand that you have resigned as the web master for
the Town's website. That is a loss for all Town residents. I encourage you
to reconsider your position on this issue.
Thank you for your time.
Note: I received several comments about
my "travails" with the Selectmen, but I give special credit for this one.
Reflections on the February 28th Harpswell Meeting
I am a Chebeague Island resident attending the February
28th meeting, seated in the upper far right bleacher section. Although
restricted to the outskirts, the effects of the process were no less
meaningful. I listened carefully to both sides, for and against the
project. Both sides argued legitimate points of concern.
One speaker's words, "It's plain as black and white,"
echoed in my thoughts throughout the meeting, and my eyes were
continuously drawn to a painting in the room. Maybe others noticed it. For
and against voters of Harpswell may take it for granted because it's
always been there. The selectman could not see it, due to their position.
But I'm sure they too knew it was there, and it has probably been part of
the character and focal point of the room for a long time. It didn't occur
to me why the words "black and white" and this painting continuously
absorbed my thoughts until later.
The answer is this ...It's not clear as black and white as
in the words of this contract or lease. The answer is in color, crystal
clear as the colors defining the character and lines of the rowboat
painted above center stage. It fits in. This room parallels this town,
neighboring towns, and this bay area. One could sign the black and white
contract and have a large scale black and white tanker painted over the
colorful rowboat. I guarantee no matter who you are, whether you vote yes
or no, or are just a visitor to the room that day, your eyes will never
become complacent to the new painting. It does not belong any more than a
tanker and this project belong in our bay. Please don't paint over the
colorful rowboat with black and white or green. Money fades, the adverse
effects from this project will not.
Jonathon Rich is the nephew of Beverly Johnson who spoke at
the meeting of the 28th.
First off, I would like to say thanks for
your efforts to bring some enlightenment to all that is happening in
Harpswell. We now have supporters in our efforts to rid this beautiful
Harpswell area of Fairwinds-the support comes from surrounding communities
as well as people from around the country.
How much secrecy is enough when it comes to
matters of this gravity? My personal opinion is that Gordon Weil should
have disqualified himself as a Selectman as soon as this offer floated in
from the sky. His background provides an obvious bias towards the energy
field which he excelled in. Sort of like seeing and old plaything from
your youth, and reliving those golden moments you had with it.
The other things that put all of us off is
the stifling of commentary. Reputable citizens are stifled at the
selectmen's meetings, even though their questions and comments are shared
by so many. Is Ashcroft in charge, or what?
Lastly, the involvement of selectmen's wives
behind the scenes is like going to Las Vegas and anticipating that you
will eventually be a winner. I am afraid that the deck is stacked and the
very best thing we can do as a community is to defeat this dragon at our
door, and one by one vote in other selectpeople who are willing to work
with the people of Harpswell, rather than to treat us as village idiots
who can't possibly understand the information available to a chosen few.
I recently pointed out that the selectmen
should have commissioned an independent set of impact studies BEFORE the
offer became a lease agreement. I guess this is common sense. Common sense
is not one of the qualities exhibited by our selectmen. It is so
elementary to do so that it slipped by the radar.
Let's work very hard to bring good
government back to Harpswell. We deserve it. The way I see it now, three
selectmen have their minds made up. Don't confuse them with facts as it
will overburden their cognitive abilities.
I added the Letter from the Town Manager of
Cumberland to Harpswell. Read it here
You can view their site here
I added John Loyd's Letter of the Times Record.
You can read it here
I would like to add Roberta Weil's but I do not have it.
[Kevin White has written an extended
Q & A for Fairwinds. I have not read all of it. While he is clearly
opposed, I think he attempts to be fair and reasonable - at least as
far as I had time to read. Burr]
Read it here
You may be interested in
reading the draft of the statement I hope to present to the Selectmen at
their meeting tonight. on the What's New section.
I would appreciate your comments.
Burr, I know you are against the LNG project and I have no
problem with that. I also think you are a sensitive, hard working guy and
that the town is losing out by your resigning. However, I do have a
question for you and I think you will answer it honestly. Fairplay has
bombarded the Maine representatives trying to get the three polling places
vote tabled. I suspect they feel they will have a better chance with a
restricted vote. Do you condone this act, and if so, why. I think this
is the kind of thing that would turn you off.
My response follows:
You have certainly buttered me up
with your comments.
While I understand your assumption
about my voting decisions, I am interested in how you reached that
conclusion, since I do not believe I have made such a statement in public.
Also, Let me say that your email has
made my day (so far). I appreciate the civil wording.
I am not a member of FairPlay nor am
I privy to their decision making process. While I share your assumptions
about their motives I do not know it as a fact.
I strongly support a vote that makes
it as easy as possible for as many people to vote as possible. I oppose
any effort to use a technicality to gain a result that does not reflect
the will of the people.
That said, I think condone is a
strong word that is generally, used in the context of violence and
property damage and would not use it here. Also, if you have read my site,
I think it would be appropriate to say that I do not "condone" the recent
behavior of the Selectmen.
In sum I would disagree with
FairPlay's efforts, but I also would accept their right to use legal
democratic techniques to attain their goals. They have different
priorities from me. They fear LNG far more than I do. Although I
acknowledge they may be right, my priority is the process we are and will
go through. In short, I am far more fearful of the behavior of the
Selectmen than of LNG.
Yes, it does turn me off.
Let me add, these are my thoughts at
this time. They are subject to change due to future discussion or
Again, thanks for for your comments.
Let me know if you have other
Mr Taylor Wrote: I am disturbed that Mr. Freeman and
Mrs. Ogrodnik were the only citizens cut off in their presentations
and treaty rudely, yet their comments were among the most relevant -
(Along with comments about voting and Harpswell TV, of course) Is this
the model of fairness and objectivity to which Mr. Weil wants us to
aspire. In my opinion, the "media" in our area are far fairer then a
This greatly disturbed me too but it was not the first time
it has happened it has happened at other public meetings hearings
selectmen’s meetings. Watch the tapes how many people that spoke for the
project were told they were out of line ? I also could not believe that an
elected official attacked our local media the way Mr. Weil did. He bashes
our local media and then goes and puts together his own show with his own
questions for the answers he wants and then he calls it the truth squad.
It seems to me that Mr. Weil’s EGO has grow so large that
it has taken over. It seems to me that Mr Weil is not representing the
whole town any more but only the people who think LNG is so great for
Harpswell. It is obvious that Selectmen Weil wants LNG to come to town. He
is an elected official to my understanding that means he is supposed to
represent the entire town not just a portion of it. His new TV show only
represents one side. I thought our elected officials were supposed to
represent the town as a whole it seems to me that Mr Weil is representing
a company with a sales pitch for it to the town he is not representing the
whole town. Mr Weil behavior is not a model of Fairness or objectivity
that should be aspired to. We are very fortunate to have the media that we
have in our town because without them we would have no objectivity or
Fairness with this project I want to thank all of our media sources for
all of the coverage they have given to both sides of this issue.
Thank you for informing the public and allowing the people
of this town to be heard.
Well Burr, I had doubts about Harpswell
Info being impartial but now I am convinced it is. Your comments
about Gordon and implying that he included this site were out of
line. Count me as a person who will delete this web site from my list
Note: I answered his message as follows. [Well, Denis
you may be right. I'll be sorry to see you go.
However, I based my conclusion on his reference to websites in his
discussion of media. I am not sure what other website he could be
referring to. FairPlay, Fairwinds, and FFFH are obviously biased. And
in his letter, I felt he said the site was biased, no matter what I
Actually, I hope you are right, but I believe your are wrong.
Good Luck to you
This is a letter My son sent to the TR. This venture
is not just effecting adults it is also effecting a younger
population in this town that does not have a voice on this issue.
I'll share with you his letter. He would like very much to log on
toThe Anchor forum and be a part of this debate. I have told him he
may not but when he goes to the library after school he reads The
Harpswell Info and the Anchor forum and he has watches HTV14 so he
is very aware of what is going on in his town.
I am only 14 I live in Harpswell in the same cove the
proposed LNG tankers will becoming in. I live in what is called the
thermal radiation zone. I also live in what is called the exclusion zone.
What does this mean to me, the thermal radiation zone means that I will be
living in a potential hibachi grill that could ignite at any time and take
my life in seconds. It means to me that I will never again feel safe where
I live. The exclusion zone means that when the ships are coming through
the cove and then moored at the dock I will not be able to be on the
beach. I will not be able to use my dock. I will not be able to clam. My
family will not be able to have our lobster traps where they are located.
This was the year I was in hopes of having my own boat and learning to
lobster. Now my future plans of fishing have been put on hold. I want
people in Harpswell to know a yes vote will not only hurt adults it will
forever hurt the future generations of Harpswell. Yes I am only 14 but I
have read enough about LNG to know it is not safe. I have listened to
enough people talk to know it will destroy a lot lives. I can not vote and
I do not think that is fair because this will effect me and I have no say.
I heard a town official say on HTV 14 this will allow people to stay in
Harpswell that can not afford to stay here it will allow families that had
to leave return. I turned and asked my mom why the families that would
have to leave didn’t matter she said she didn’t know and I said well I am
voting no. So here I am I have no say on something that could hurt me so I
am asking please everyone that can vote please vote no my future dreams
and safety are in you hands.
While much attention is currently being given to the
strengths and weaknesses of the proposed lease agreement, it is important
that we not forget some of the issues that are not and cannot be
adequately addressed by that document. Two of those issues that are
closely linked, safety and security, have been raised on numerous
occasions. What I believe has been missing from that discussion is a
comprehensive review of the various pertinent elements. The paper I have
provided is an attempt, based on my experience, to provide that review and
to follow the path of "knowns" and "unknowns" to a logical conclusion.
Because a discussion of security necessitates a discussion
of terrorism, the paper covers that topic in some detail. My intention is
not to employ "scare tactics" to influence anyone's thinking. Rather my
intention is to deal clearly and honestly with that topic so that folks
can make decisions based on the realities and uncertainties of the world
we live in. I am well aware that mention of the "T" word causes a
visceral reaction in some and a more or less complacent response by
others. I only ask folks to read what I have written and ask themselves,
in their heart of hearts, if what I have said makes sense.
I apologize for the length of the paper, four pages,
however, the issues of safety and security are too important and too
complex to be dealt with in sound bite fashion.
[You may read his statement
Selectman's meeting on February 19, 2004, Selectman Weil gave an angry
rant on many topics, including the media and local websites. I believe he
meant to include this site. His comments, in general and in particular,
offended, angered and hurt me. I have responded in the
What's New section and by posting
an email exchange we have had
during the last month. (which shows why I think he meant to include this
site.) I am interested in your thoughts and will post any appropriate
comments on any side of the issue.
My mother, Barbara
White, told me that you might publish my letter to the editor on your web
site. I have submitted the attached letter to both the Harpswell Anchor
and the Brunswick Time Record. Because of its length (about 1500
words) I will have to pay to publish it in each newspaper...which I plan
to do. If you can put it up on your web site I would appreciate it very
much! Thank you for your consideration. You
can read it here
[Note by Burr: Cheryl Golek has added a long series of
abstracts about the fire/explosion in Algeria. The most recent
abstract says the explosions was caused by a gas leak. She makes the
comment that "Looks like LNG does explode." Well
of course, LNG does not explode, but NG (natural gas) does. Peter
Micciche said there was no LNG at the Algeria site, but he did not say
anything about NG. He did say there were lots of things there that
could burn and/or leak.]
You can read her comment
Mr. D'Agostino and Mr. Baker:
You both have said it better that I could. Fairwinds will
mean the destruction of the Harpswell we love, and will have a serious
negative impact on all of Casco Bay.
Please help make sure that this doesn't happen. One big
thing you both could do to help would be to come to the Fishing Families
For Harpswell rally next Saturday, February 21 at 1pm. It will be held in
the field across from the Kellogg Church. The Fishing Families want to
assemble enough people to outline an LNG tanker, to demonstrate just how
massive these things are. It is very important that we get as mant people
as possible, to protest Fairwinds and let them know that we will not let
them destroy our town, that we want them to keep their hands off Casco
Bay. No one has worked harder to drive Fairwinds away that the fishermen
-- lets give them lots of support!
As have many of my neighbors, I have given this Conoco
Fairwinds proposal some amount of thought. The comment that I've heard
that stands out with me is this project is just too massive in scale for a
town of this size. To have tankers the length of a healthy aircraft
carrier coming and going two to four times a week and a facility whose
primary attribute will be two thirteen story tanks containing billions of
cubic feet of natural gas is just too large for Harpswell. We have
something special in this town that seems to reflect many aspects of Maine
life. I think we need to ask ourselves do we want to be a town like Bath?
BIW dominates Bath as will Conoco Philips here. Do we want the presence
of an eight hundred pound multi-national corporate entity and all that
goes with it?
I've read the estimates of income and possible expenses
that would arise out of this facility. Even if we were to receive twice
the dollars promised I don't think this LNG facility belongs here.
Sometimes, it is about more than the money. This is one of those
Just a few questions regarding the "Fair" Winds
(ConocoPhillips) attempt to take over the town of Harpswell and
surrounding Casco Bay for their own selfish interests. As I understand the
project plan, once construction begins Broad Sound will be blocked to
recreational boating for the duration of the construction, as will the
entire inside corridor between
Portland and Freeport. Will vacationers who come here
to Vacationland and Casco Bay for the boating, be blocked from taking
their boats out of So. Freeport harbor and into Broad Sound? Will they be
allowed to take their boats down the Royall River in Yarmouth and into
Broad Sound? What will become of the recreational boats in the
Portland Yacht Club
anchorage and those in the Handy Boat
anchorage? Will they too all be "trapped" on their
moorings or in dry dock for several years while this outrageous project is
under way? Will the towns small boat landing ramps also be closed for the
duration? Will the fishing boats be allowed to come and go as they must in
order for their owners to earn a living? Will local lobstermen be allowed
to set their traps in the sound and the corridor where the lobsters are
most plentiful? Or, more to the point, will they even be allowed out of
port? Will the ferry services from So. Freeport to Bustin's Isl. and
Cousins Isl. and Little John's Isl. to Cheabeague Isl. be allowed to
continue? If not, how does "Fair" Winds propose the residents of Bustin's
and Cheabeague Isl. go on about their daily lives?
Has anybody in Harpswell considered the cost of the greatly
increased security needed for such an undertaking? The highest levels of
security will be required right from day one and who will pay for this,
once the project is completed and "Fair' Winds blow away? I truly hope
you're not naive enough to believe that "Fair" Winds will continue to foot
the bill once the project is completed. Those and many other huge bills
will then fall to the residents/tax payers of the town of Harpswell. Has
anyone there noticed what has happened in the town of Yarmouth tax payers
now that CMP has stopped paying their taxes on the Wyman plant? The town
had no choice but to raise the property taxes. My property tax has almost
doubled this year. If you think this isn't going to happen to you there in
Harpswell....think again folks. This project has been very poorly
researched on the local level and is in my estimation is far too large for
this small section of the Maine coast. I truly hope that your town fathers
will see the error of their ways and not encourage this corporate Giant to
take over Casco Bay in this manner. Please remember residents of
Harpswell....if "Fair" Winds (ConocoPhillips) establishes a foot hold
there in your town, you cannot vote them out for at least 50 years
neighbors....fifty years! Do you really want some huge, out of state
conglomerate dictating your town's affairs for the rest of your life and
the lives of many of your children? Please.....vote NO on this outrageous
proposal!! Thank you in advance.
Deeply concerned...... R.Adam Baker Resident........
I believe that the reason that the Harpswell Neck fire
department may have to move if Fairwinds is built is because FERC is
currently revising LNG safety requirements. I know that Dr. James Fay (who
Fairwinds has been ridiculing for the last few months) has been brought
into this process by FERC. If the Thermal Exclusion Zones, are enlarged,
as many think they will be, then the Fire Department and the school may be
well within those zones. Which would mean that in the event of a problem
at the plant, both of these facilities might be engulfed by the resulting
The reason to move the fire department would be so that the
emergency workers and their equipment would not be rendered useless. The
reason to move the school would be so our children are not killed or
injured by an LNG accident.
I did not write the report, so I am surmising what I have
heard. Perhaps we can get the author of the report to pay us another visit
Again, thanks for reading the report. It's nice to have
someone from your group who has taken the time to do so.
People are always scared of the unknown. The fear
occurs because we either don't want to hear the facts or we don't
understand the facts.
Harpswell has, in effect, been told that we could be in the first
stages of a debilitating disease. We can accept the diagnosis and take
preventative measures or let it consume the town.
for your comments regarding the Yellow Wood economic report, I would
suggest that you go over the lease with the same critical scrutiny as the
economic report. Perhaps then you will realize the weaknesses of the
In addition, carefully review the tape of
your "Friends" gathering at the Grange Hall, and count how many times you
and Ms. Levensailor repeat that the mission is to identify "the positive
aspects" of the proposal. If that doesn't scream BIAS loud and long, then
I guess we were all born last night. I would say that by incorporating
such fine investigative techniques, Friends of Fairwinds could make a case
to reinstate slavery.
Furthermore, as Fairwinds supporters
like to take the casual approach of criticizing the efforts of FairPlay,
perhaps Friends of Fairwinds can show us all what they're made of, step up
to the plate, put your money where your mouth is, and have your own
economic report done. Perhaps then you will begin to understand how
FairPlay supporters have personally sacrificed their time and money to
take up the slack left behind by the Selectmen. Besides, it¹s far more
legitimate than the armchair quarterback approach that Friends of
Fairwinds has been taking.
Everything regarding the proposed Fairwinds project in
their flyers, presentations, and reports is, by their own admission,
speculation. I quote from the Fairwinds Project Description and Impact
Document Executive Summary P.1:² A final project design...will be
prepared...after a site is secured for the facility.² The Yellow Woods
report is no different. Even the lease is based on speculation. These
documents are all based on informed conjecture. The question is, which
information best holds up to scrutiny?
It is up to us, as citizens of Harpswell, to carefully
review ALL the information presented, pro and con, and make an intelligent
choice. Conoco/Phillips has not impressed me during their time in
Harpswell. I find their lease ³Guarantees² to be flawed. I am more
convinced than ever that approving Fairwinds would be a fatal error for
Cheryl, thanks for your response and I
will answer later. I have no clue to where "nbsp" came from or
means!; Chris, I would probably give more consideration to your cause
if there were convincing facts. Why would we need a new fire dept. in
a location from the depot? The Harpswell Neck Fire Dept. was
constructed by the Navy because of its proximity to the depot. Why
would that differ from the LNG site?
You certainly are entitled to your opinion on the report.
There are many people who would disagree with you. Thanks for taking the
time to read it!
Obviously, we knew when we did this study that Conoco
Phillips and TransCanada and their supporters would try to discredit it in
any way possible. When you challenge a the big industrial polluters, they
will come at you -- because if you expose the lies and half truths they
are dishing out, they have nothing left. They must sell the lies and half
truths to force their way upon a community.
At any rate, thanks for reading it. Unlike many who are
already bashing our group, at least you took the time to read it.
Chris, I read the report from cover to
cover and the majority of the impacts are based on suppositions. For
every statement, it is possible to have a counter point also based on
suppositions. I'll detail my counter points later. The Yellow Wood
Assoc. report is not fact based!
Dennis, This is just a few questions I have for you and the
Friends of Fairwinds group.
Just curious does Friends Of Fairwinds have any factual
data on why this is so great for Harpswell?
Do you have any info that has not come from Fairwinds sales
Has your group raised any money to have any independent
studies done for the citizens of Harpswell?
Have you any factual data on the safety of LNG data that
has not come from a billion dollar company looking to become a
multibillion dollar company?
How many people in your group have children in the west
How do the people The Fairwinds Yes group feel about
supporting a company that supports terrorism?
Could you explain to me why a company with this history
makes a great neighbor with facts please?
Has Friends of Fairwinds consulted with the lobster
conservatory on the impacts a pipeline will have?
Has Friends of Fairwinds hired anyone that is not connected
to the industry to research the effects this venture will have on
At your first meeting your group said they only wanted to
get information to the Harpswell Citizens will your group be getting any
information to the
citizens from any independent source that is not connected
to Fairwinds in any way?
Just a few questions Dennis I have had for Friends of
Fairwinds for a while
I look forward to your response.
Denis: What is nbsp?
To Chris Duval...I accept your comments
but after the call in tonight, I still fail to see facts. All of
your consultants statements have no facts!. Tell me why the
school will have to be relocated. Tell me why the fire
department will cost Harpswell big bucks. Tell me why property
values will decrease. Give us the facts! I am sorry but
you are wrong!
How did you manage to characterize the FairPlay
commissioned economic impact study before it was released? Had you even
read it when you made these comments?
You have every right to disagree with the report, but
please don't mischaracterize the way it was done.
No output was ever agreed on, or even discussed. It was
made very clear to us that we might not like all of the findings, but that
they would be doing their own report.
A fee was agreed upon -- you are right on that point.
The consultant was paid in advance, so no matter what their
report conclusions were, they would get their money.
I really don't know how you could call an economic impact
study a "scare tactic".
The report is a well done, well researched document. Most
of those who attended the meeting tonight seemed to find it factual and
thought provoking. Many expressed their thanks that finally someone had
produced a meaningful study, as opposed to the lack of information put out
by the selectmen.
Can it's findings be debated. Of course -- it is a study,
and all studies are open to question. But, it's the only economic impact
study that anyone will be doing on Fairwinds before the election.
I cannot attest to the fidelity of the studies nor the
integrity of the contracts/contractors with which Denis has been
associated. Generally speaking, in my experience, a legitimate contract
calls for a legitimate contractor to provide objective responses to
specific questions that can be substantiated with sound evidence or logic,
but does not, by design, specify the content of the those responses. In
the absence of information to the contrary, it might be advisable for us
to refrain from implications that the socio-economic report in question
and the company that provided it are less than ethical. This might be
especially appropriate if we have not even read the entire report.
Will the contractors get paid if they do not meet the
requirements of the contract for objective responses to specific issues?
Probably not, that is why the requirements are there in the first
place. Will they get paid if folks don't like the answers they get?
Probably yes, that is why there is a contract in the first place.
As regards relying on facts, it might again be beneficial
to read the report and then ask the necessary questions before judging the
merits of the report.
As regards the assertion about "scare tactics," it seems
that some folks around town have become all to ready to wave that flag
anytime they hear something they do not like or that seems to undermine
their notions of reality. I am beginning to wonder if it is not truth
itself that really scares them.
Yes, Denis I have noticed the Fairwinds Yes signs down and
not the opposition. Not only were they torn down, they were thrown on the
ground as well. (I believe that is littering) A member of FairPlay was
witnessed taking a Fairwinds Yes sign down yesterday. Perhaps they should
rename themselves Foulplay for Harpswell. In the end, it doesn't matter
how many signs are up or down, what matters is how you vote on March 9th.
Please vote YES.
Read some of the results of the $27,000 FairPlay consultant's
report. After spending several years in the Corp. world, engaging consultants
and being one after retirement, you have to understand the process:
An output is agreed to: ( terrible impacts, reduced property
values, high loss of fishermen gear, increased cost of town services)
A fee is agreed to: $27,000
The consultant puts a document together meeting the clients
Would the consultant be paid if the document didn't meet the
client' s expectations? H- No!
I urge you voters to seek a fact based analysis and not a
consultant's scare tactics.
Oh, have you noticed the damages to Fairwinds Yes signs and not
to the opposition?
Terrorism NOT an issue????
USA: November 28, 2001
WASHINGTON - U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft said this week that the Bush
administration received information on a possible terror attack on the
American natural gas sector.
By LEE DAVIDSON
Questions have swirled around the safety of transporting LNG in tankers and
what a worst-case scenario would be if a shipping accident occurred.
Leading LNG scientists have said the loss of just one of the five tanks on
board a ship could result in a fire a half-mile wide. The fire would cause
residences near the site to catch fire and would emit thermal radiation
capable of giving second-degree burns to residents living within a two-mile
radius of the tank site. He said the thermal radiation zone would encompass
five square miles.
LNG is lighter than sea water. Once spilled,
it floats, unmixed, on the sea surface. Most importantly, it speedily spreads
sideways, exposing the fuel to the air above. Once ignited, the LNG pool will
burn vigorously. The time to burn spills of the size mentioned above can be
less than five minutes.
Fires that burn thousands of tons of
fuel in a few minutes are extraordinarily large, lying well outside the range
of domestic firefighting experience
If they are so safe why did
this LNG facility do this BEFORE the above report????
Sep 29, 2003
Atlantic LNG is moving to create a buffer zone, which is a
transition zone between heavy industrial estates and residential areas.
The company is proposing to relocate, at its own expense, some 80 families of
Pt. Ligoure and New Lands from the proposed zone to Southern Gardens, not far
from their present location. Southern Gardens is a brand new housing
development being undertaken by the National Housing Authority (NHA). Atlantic
LNG will fund the building of homes earmarked for relocated families.
At this time, Atlantic LNG is involved in completing the
collection of information relating to persons who now live within the proposed
buffer zone. The focus of our relocation efforts is on land-owners, land
tenants and the owners of buildings whether these are rented or owner
occupied. Atlantic LNG maintains that it will work to achieve a transparent
solution that is fair to all persons who will be relocated. 1) As far as
tax relief....you can be assured of "house relief". That is because your
property value will plummet....real quick.
2) Who is going to pay the high liability insurance for
Harpswell once this monstrosity is in place.
3) Here's a good one... where is the state of the art Fire
Department coming from in case of a disaster or attack? (I don't want to
hear the argument of an attack being a "remote" possibility. 9/11. Wake up!!
It CAN and DID happen, didn't it?
4) Are you aware that ConocoPhillips (Fairwinds) has dealings
with Syria...a country that harbors, trains and funds terrorist groups? Are
you aware that they are able to do that because they have a foreign offsite
office (when they receive their mail they rubberstamp it and send it back to
their Houston Headquarters!!) They also keep the bulk of their profits in
foreign banks to avoid paying U.S.taxes? (60 Minutes 1/23/04 Doing Business
With the Enemy)
They want US to trust THEM????
5) Provide Jobs???? Come on folks. Talk's cheap. Do your
homework and see how many locals are working at the facilities that are in
place now...not counting housekeeping and bathroom duty.
6) I think that an investigation is in order as to why
our selectman are so hopped up on this LNG project that we have to
have a "SPECIAL" election oh so quickly...perhaps???? (No..couldn't
happen in Harpswell...)
Sounds like the casino issue in
Saco doesn't it?
Selectman Weil up for election in March??? I have an
idea...why doesn't he pack up and take Fairwind's with him to
Kennebunkport and see if it will fly there.
I love my
community and the folks in it...just the way it is. VOTE NO!!!!!!!
My daughter and
her husband, Joe Roth lived for 5 years in Valdez, Alaska, which is a
major exporter for Alaskan oil. I asked Joe if he had any comments to
make about the effect of oil on Valdez. Valdez is a town of about 4200
people and has a beautiful harbor. You can
read it here.