A June 12 Morning Sentinel editorial, “Dam removal event celebratory except for LePage,” would have you drink the Kool-Aid to believe that the removal of the Great Works and Veazie dams on the Penobscot is a wonderful thing.

Gov. Paul LePage is right: “Removing hydro dams is irresponsible, and more should be put in.”

Lest we forget, in 2008, the needless demise of the working Fort Halifax hydroelectric dam in Winslow was an environmental disaster.

The removal of the dam caused the loss of clean renewable energy, the loss of a 417-acre lake, the loss of a four-season recreation area, the loss of slope stability, the loss of six family homes on Dallaire Street, the loss of the city sewer line, a landslide on Cemetery Hill, the loss of tons of soil through bank erosion, the loss of countless endangered mussels, fish and aquatic life, the loss of property values along the dewatered impoundment, the increased cost of replacing the Mile Brook Bridge because of pier scouring, and the loss of the scenic waterfall in the center of town.

The taxpayer cost from this one dam removal is hovering at $2 million. The emotional cost is immeasurable. For what? So that sea-run fish can swim another five miles to the next dam.

There is a saying that if you can’t be a good example, you may end up being a horrible lesson.

Sorry, Winslow won’t celebrate the Penobscot dam removals any time soon.

Mary Ellen Fletcher


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