Lewis County, New York, is home to Tug Hill, a rugged plateau downwind of the eastern shore of Lake Ontario, and site of the Maple Ridge Wind Farm; Maple Ridge Wind Farm is the largest wind farm in the Northeast. Lewis County also happens to produce more maple syrup than any other county in New York, an estimated 255,000 gallons in 2004. It is in this community of abundant renewable resources that the film, Tapping Maple Ridge is set.
Tapping Maple Ridge is a meditation on the unexpected parallels between wind energy and maple syrup production. Shot on High-Definition video, the film illustrates the visual and conceptual correspondences between the sugar bush (a stand of maple trees tapped for syrup) and the wind farm. Interviews with maple syrup producers, Tug Hill landowners, Lewis County residents, and wind energy developers reinforce and elaborate on those relationships.
Tapping Maple Ridge hopes to help influence the public conversation about the desirability of wind energy by demonstrating how it is in keeping with a long American tradition of using local sustainable resources for the common good. This film was funded by Horizon Wind Energy and PPM Energy, partners in the Maple Ridge Wind Farm.