I am a former U.S. Navy communications officer with significant experience in composing and reviewing communications between Navy ships at sea and shore-based commands of the Atlantic Sixth Fleet.

One basic premise of successful communications is that they provide accurate, very specific and easily understood information.

Opponents of the proposed New England Clean Energy Connect transmission line project from Central Maine Power continue to present inaccurate, ambiguous, confusing and easily misunderstood public communications.

They claim that the proposed 150-foot-wide transmission line green field clearing through Beattie Township to Moxie Gore inclusive will be wider than the New Jersey Turnpike.  This is a clear example of communicating with the intent to create misunderstanding. How wide is the New Jersey Turnpike anyway?  Two hundre feet? Five hundred feet? Does it vary? Many Mainers have little detailed information, but visualize multiple paved lanes of busy traffic.

This is not a valid comparison to the proposed 150- foot-wide vegetated clearing, which will support many species of wildlife and can provide multiple compatible recreational uses. The reference to the New Jersey Turnpike by opponents is not intended to provide accuracy. It creates inapplicable concern intended to manipulate emotions rather than easily understood facts and accurate information that can be useful in the decision- making process.

A more readily available comparison is to the width (sideline to sideline) of a standard football field.  There is plenty of opportunity for anyone curious to go look at their local high school football field.

The 150-foot-wide transmission line clearing is not “wider than the New Jersey Turnpike,” it is 150 feet wide, 10 feet less than the width of a standard football field.

 

Harold M. Klaiber

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