Presented by: Robert Golder, MPP Candidate 2014
In this presentation I speak about the dynamics of community acceptance vs. community resistance to the siting and operation of land-based, municipally-owned wind turbines. I discuss a theory of total social acceptance of renewable energies, and concepts of hazard and outrage, as applied to community assessments of risk with regard to turbines. A review of lessons learned in Europe concerning social acceptance of turbines is applied to two case studies in Massachusetts. Community resistance in the town of Falmouth, MA is contrasted with community acceptance in the city of Hull, MA, as I seek to understand how communities arrive at negative or positive perceptions of wind energy, and look at how opportunities for society to benefit from wind energy are delayed or lost.
As part of my work done for Dr. Michael Goodman’s “Research Methods” course (POL 581-7101, Fall 2012 semester), I applied these studies and concepts to a hypothetical survey of baseline community attitudes and opinions of residents in New Bedford, MA, prior to siting a wind project. In this presentation, I share some of the high points of what I learned as a graduate student from considering these issues in the context of conducting a survey, and how it affected me.
A video link to the presentation is available here (opens in a separate window):
Photos of the event are available below (click on images to increase size):