Impact on Economy
Note: counts do not include items in sub-categories
The cost of offshore wind power could be cut in half if all Delmarva Power customers were required to participate, a state consultant said in a report issued Thursday.
The report, which was mostly favorable toward the offshore wind project, could give Bluewater Wind momentum going into Tuesday's decisive meeting in Dover. And it could give a basis for the Public Service Commission to spread out the costs.
The PSC will join three other state agencies to decide whether to direct Delmarva to sign a 25-year deal with Bluewater in an effort to stabilize prices and curb emissions. ...Onshore wind farms offer prices 24 percent to 36 percent lower than Bluewater's project, he said. Delmarva contends the savings would be about 45 percent.
But he included a pointed caveat: As onshore wind developers build, they will use up the good sites. Developers will eventually focus on less windy sites, resulting in higher costs. When that happens, there will be a move to build offshore, he said.
New Jersey's Division of Rate Counsel estimates that building 1,100 megawatts of offshore wind capability could cost $5.6 billion over the next 20 years and cost average ratepayers $5 to $8 surcharges on their monthly bills.
Windmills and solar panel arrays have become symbols of America's growing interest in alternative energy. Yet as Congress begins debating new rules to restrict carbon dioxide emissions and promote electricity produced from renewable sources, an underlying question is how much more Americans will be willing to pay to harness the wind and the sun.
A cross-industry group called the Powerline is to launch a scathing attack on the Bill, due to be given Royal Assent later this year, through advertising and social media. The business leaders are furious at what they see as the energy Bill's over-reliance on costly renewable energy at the expensive of traditional and lower-cost energy sources such as coal-fired and gas power stations.
Wisconsin ranks eighth in the nation in terms of potential job gains that could be linked to an expansion of renewable energy, a report released Tuesday says.
The report surveyed sectors of the economy that could be tapped for expansion as development of renewable energy - whether wind, solar, geothermal or biomass - expands.
Question marks were raised yesterday over plans to make council-owned land in Northumberland available to wind farm developers.
In a move aimed at both demonstrating the county council's `green' credentials and raising much-needed income, executive members agreed in principle to the use of the authority's land assets for wind energy generation.
Anti-windfarm activists are claiming a victory after homes near turbines had their council tax bills cut.
Campaigners in Cumbria are viewing the Government decision as a step towards an admission that wind turbines do affect properties and their value.
Leaderdale and Melrose councillor John Paton-Day has called for a halt to wind farm developments in the Borders.
The Lib Dem from Earlston was reacting to a letter in TheSouthern last week (October 29 issue) from Mr S. Wilson from Blairgowrie, who described how he had advised a party of 20 hillwalkers from Austria not to visit the region because "the hills have been destroyed by numerous wind farms with a lot more to come".
“I’m not sure everyone knows what they are voting on,” Bono, District 11, said prior to the vote. ...information included guidelines for the contract negotiation, which include a proposal for a payment in lieu of taxes of $8,000 per megawatt, for a total of $640,000 on an 80 megawatt project. The information also said that the county would receive a one-time payment of $360,000 to $400,000 in its general fund for use on other projects such as the construction of a new county correctional facility.
“One of my main concerns is how can I justify an 85 percent tax break for this company and not for anyone else,” Bono said. “We want to attract businesses to Herkimer County, but we cannot give 85 percent tax breaks to everyone. We need to continue to work with the numbers.”
Huron County commissioners, earlier this week, discussed concerns the state will eliminate the personal property taxes businesses pay on equipment, which would result in a more than $700,000 loss in revenue for the county.
County officials on Tuesday pitched a concept of working in concert with wind developers to eliminate uncertainty the Michigan Legislature has created by proposing legislation to eliminate the personal property tax, which is the only tax revenue wind companies pay for wind farms.
A few landowners in Logan County might have the opportunity to lead the way in Ohio with the largest wind power operation in the state if the plans of a few green-energy companies prosper on properties in Jefferson, Monroe and Rushcreek townships.
However, the proposed construction of up to 120 wind turbines in as soon as a year, each up to 550 feet tall, might be a bad move the community will have to live with for a long time, opponents say.
Nearly 100 local residents met Tuesday afternoon at Marmon Valley Farm to discuss the implications of turning Logan County into what would fast become the largest wind power community in the state, while several posed the question: Are developers and landowners moving too quick with a decision that will affect the local community and disturb Logan County’s historic and scenic landscape for generations to come?
After extensive research, Tom Stacy of Zanesfield, and others, believe so.
“This is a way to shelter big company profits from taxes,” Mr. Stacy said. “It’s a symbol; it’s a monument that we’re doing something to conserve energy. The only thing is: It’s not conserving energy. They want to put up at least 100 to 120 of these things soon and it’s going to devastate the property values and scenery around them for miles.”
Jefferson County taxpayers could be left paying town and school district taxes for a wind farm if the developer fails to pay the project taxes, warns Paul J. Warneck, Jefferson County director of real property services.
County officials are worried that taxpayers will have limited recourse if a wind farm leasing land for its turbines does not make its tax or payment-in-lieu-of-taxes payments.
Madison County Supervisors are at odds over whether the county should get a portion of the payments that will go to the towns and schools affected by the latest windmill project with Citizens Airtricity Energy LLC.
Chairman of the Board Rocky DiVeronica called a special board meeting Wednesday to consider an agreement with Airtricity so the county would get $500 per megawatt of electrical power as a payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT).
DiVeronica planned to conduct the meeting behind closed doors in executive session.
If Luzerne County tax officials get their way, the new wind farm atop Bald Mountain will pump out more than half a million dollars in new tax revenue each year.
The county last week mailed a bill with new assessments that equate to $133,660 in annual tax dollars for the county and $411,259 for the Wilkes-Barre Area School District from wind farm landowners Anthony and Lillian Lupas and Edward and Joyce Banaszek, said county assessor’s office director Tony Alu.
But school and county leaders can’t bank the money yet because the taxation of wind farms is still somewhat uncharted territory and the property owners have 40 days to appeal to the county Board of Assessment Appeals, Alu said.
He declined to say how the county calculated the Bald Mountain bill.
Glacier County Commissioners are discussing how to use nearly $190,000 in impact fees from a planned wind farm near Cut Bank.
Commissioners were supposed to approve allocation of the fees June 9, but a decision was tabled until Glacier County attorney Larry Epstein could attend the meeting, according to the Cut Bank Pioneer Press.
County commissioners unveiled a draft agreement Thursday for a tax-increment financing district that could bring the county up to $4 million over 20 years to use for economic development in unorganized territories. ...But Carrabassett Valley Town Manager Dave Cota said the draft agreement would shift more of the county tax burden to organized towns and let the company get away with not paying its fair share of taxes.
Mitchell said the purpose was to reach a balanced agreement that would benefit all of the county directly and indirectly.
The TIF would capture 75 percent of the new tax revenue for the first 10 years and 50 percent for the latter 10, with the county keeping 40 percent and TransCanada getting 60 percent. The remaining tax revenue gained would go into the state's unorganized territory fund.
Eric and Kyle Hosmer of Howard address the Howard Town Board meeting Wednesday night and asked that a letter they read to the board be placed in the official minutes. The request was denied for the time being. As a courtesy, we are printing portions of that letter here.
Editor's Note: The complete letter follows.