What is the Sugarloaf Community Wind Farm? The Sugarloaf Community Wind Farm is a renewable energy project being developed by Endless Energy Corporation. It will produce clean, renewable electric power from 30 modern wind turbines. In one year, it will generate about 260 million kilowatt hours, which is enough to power 40,000 Maine homes. The project will be constructed on Redington Pond Range and Black Nubble mountains, approximately four miles west of Sugarloaf Mountain ski area and eight miles south of Stratton, Maine.
Why was this site chosen? The site in the Carrabassett Valley region, near existing roads, power lines, and other developments (such as Sugarloaf USA), which minimize environmental impacts. Additionally, the mountain has an excellent wind resource and an unusually long and level north-south ridge. Redington Mountain is surrounded by actively managed timberlands and the U.S. Navy survival school.
Why build the Sugarloaf Community Wind Farm?
What would be the environmental benefits? The single largest environmental impact of the wind farm will be the huge amount of pollution prevented compared to other energy sources. The Sugarloaf Community Wind Farm will:
These figures don't include "upstream" impacts such as mining, drilling, pipelines, oil spills, wars, or the transportation of fuels associated with energy production form other sources. The project is not expected to have a significant impact on wildlife or plant communities. Soil and water quality will be protected by using the best management practices for road and power line upgrades.
Initial clearing for the project will be about 307 acres- the equivalent of 61 five-acre house lots. 220 acres of this will be allowed to revegetate after construction. Biologists have collected data which show that the project will have minimal to no impact on wildlife or plant communities.
What will the wind farm look like? Endless Energy is planning on using the modern Vestas V90 wind turbine which has a generation capacity of 3MW. The wind turbines would be on 262-foot tubular tower. The 150 foot blades on each turbine will rotate at a leisurely 16rpm.
The project would be visible from Sugarloaf, numerous logging roads and snowmobile trails, a few points on the Appalachian Trail, and Route 16. Surveys indicate that three-quarters of local residents, skiers, snowmobilers, hunters, and hikers are supportive or neutral regarding the project. Click here to see photo-simulations of the proposed project.
Who is Endless Energy? Endless Energy is a Maine-based wind energy company formed in 1987. We are dedicated to developing clean, renewable wind energy, which promotes economic development while reducing our dependence on imported fossil fuels. Endless Energy owns the site of the proposed Sugarloaf Community Wind Farm through an affiliate and began conducting wind measurements for the project in 1993.
Will I be able to get my power from the Sugarloaf Community Wind Farm? Yes! Endless Energy plans on first offering power within the communities that are closest to the wind farm. Customers would pay an up front fee in order to receive stable, low-cost power from the project for a duration of 15 years. Locals can think global and act local by using power harvested within their own community.
Please contact us if you would like more information about becoming a community wind farmer.
The future is today
Annexation process underway with selectmen’s approval
Announcement from Town of Carrabassett Valley Board of Selectmen (PDF)
Lifted by the wind and other sources of power
Maine steps forward into the wind