FALMOUTH, Maine (AP) — A group that opposed several wind power projects attacked a Maine Audubon report Thursday that concluded wind power can be developed without harming wildlife, accusing the environmental organization of being influenced by donations from the wind power industry.
The report concluded that the state has more than 1 million acres of land that could support wind power projects and that there'd be little to no impact to wildlife on most of that land.
Friends of Maine Mountains attacked Maine Audubon's findings, saying the science wasn't sound. It also accused the Falmouth-based environmental organization of being biased by corporate donations it receives from the wind power industry.
"The wind industry in Maine is being given a free pass. (Maine Audubon Society) needs to re-evaluate their association with industrial wind and work with the experts in the field to provide us with an unbiased picture of the impact of industrial wind on our environment," said Michael Bond, a member of Friends of Maine Mountains Board of Directors.
Maine Audubon allows donations from individuals and corporations, but "our policy positions are not affected by our contributions," said spokeswoman Michelle Smith.
The Maine Audubon report looked at areas with sufficient wind to generate electricity and areas with the heaviest concentrations of wildlife.