Presentation on theme: "Steel Forests and Smoke Stacks: Aesthetics and Imagery in the Cape Wind Controversy Roopali Phadke Department of Environmental Studies Macalester Colelge."— Presentation transcript:
Steel Forests and Smoke Stacks: Aesthetics and Imagery in the Cape Wind Controversy Roopali Phadke Department of Environmental Studies Macalester Colelge October 2005 NREL’s Patriot Turbine
Research Questions Use the viewshed analysis case study to ask: –How does the visual domain enter into deliberative democracy? –Can we create legitimate public fora for addressing affective concerns about environmental change?
Jim Gordon’s Blinding Insight “Already drawn to Nantucket Sound, whose steady winds promised a sturdy flow of electricity, Gordon watched as a computer program drew tighter and tighter borders around a spot less than 6 miles off of Cape Cod…One diagram showed that the site, called Horseshoe Shoal, could hold enough windmills to supply three-quarters of the Cape and Islands' electricity needs during peak winds. Another showed that the site was clear of flight paths. Ferry routes neatly skimmed both edges. Shipping channels -- not a problem. The water was shallow and sheltered enough to limit construction costs and protect wind turbines from the ravages of crashing waves. "We said, `Oh, my God, this is incredible,' " said Gordon, president of Cape Wind Associates. "It all came together. It was so optimal.“ The Boston Globe, November 11, 2003
From Windstop website The very essence of the heart and soul of Cape Cod is about to be destroyed forever. Hundreds of years of history and traditions of the sea, from hunting Moby Dick to the memories of President John F. Kennedy sailing with his family in the waters just off the summer White House are about to be replaced with a towering, 40-story steel forest they call an industrial wind plant and a 10 story tall 40,000 gallon oil-filled transformer station….The tranquil sounds of terns fishing, sea breezes blowing through the beach grass and the sound of waves tickling the beach sand are going to be replaced by the constant whooshing sound created by the 165-foot blades passing the 16-foot wide tower bases at over 150 miles per hour.
Before and after views By artist Louis Guarnaccia
Comment #181: Laura Tino “I cannot imagine that these small structures could be more offensive than oil rigs or coal mines or nuclear power plants. Certainly, they are much more pleasant to view than the body of a soldier who has died for oil, or the body of a miner who has died of lung cancer, or the fried body of anyone who has died from a nuclear accident...If I were to stand on the shore of our ocean and see a patch of windmills way off in the distance, tiny white specks, I would feel a surge of pride that, even in America today, we can make progress.”
Public Visioning Building on the Decision Theater model: –If viewshed analyses incorporated more sophisticated visualization strategies would this provide officials and community members with better information to aid decision-making? –What spaces and processes can be developed for alternative visual claims making that incorporate lay cultural specificity? –What role can such facilities play in building visual literacy?