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Dominion not giving up on wind farm in Tazewell County

Dominion hasn't given up on its plans to build a wind farm in Tazewell County, spokesman James Beazley said Monday during the Southwest Virginia Technology Council's third annual energy technology summit. ...The project received what appeared to be a fatal blow Feb. 2, when the Tazewell County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 in favor of a tall structure ordinance.

WISE, Va. - Dominion hasn't given up on its plans to build a wind farm in Tazewell County, spokesman James Beazley said Monday during the Southwest Virginia Technology Council's third annual energy technology summit.

"We are still thinking outside of the box for a positive outcome," said Beazley, who reiterated that a wind farm on East River Mountain would bring jobs and economic benefits to the region.

The project received what appeared to be a fatal blow Feb. 2, when the Tazewell County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 in favor of a tall structure ordinance, effectively prohibiting construction of wind turbines on proposed wind sites.

Beazley didn't elaborate on why the company believes it can revive the project, but he did say that a similar project in Wise County, which is in a more remote area and has not generated controversy, is moving forward.

At Dominion headquarters in Richmond, Va., spokesman Ryan Frazier said the company will "play the waiting game" with the belief that Tazewell County's people and elected officials will change their minds.

"We consider this a long-term investment," he said. "It's not something that we had planned... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

WISE, Va. - Dominion hasn't given up on its plans to build a wind farm in Tazewell County, spokesman James Beazley said Monday during the Southwest Virginia Technology Council's third annual energy technology summit.

"We are still thinking outside of the box for a positive outcome," said Beazley, who reiterated that a wind farm on East River Mountain would bring jobs and economic benefits to the region.

The project received what appeared to be a fatal blow Feb. 2, when the Tazewell County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 in favor of a tall structure ordinance, effectively prohibiting construction of wind turbines on proposed wind sites.

Beazley didn't elaborate on why the company believes it can revive the project, but he did say that a similar project in Wise County, which is in a more remote area and has not generated controversy, is moving forward.

At Dominion headquarters in Richmond, Va., spokesman Ryan Frazier said the company will "play the waiting game" with the belief that Tazewell County's people and elected officials will change their minds.

"We consider this a long-term investment," he said. "It's not something that we had planned to do overnight. So we will continue to do land studies, wind studies. ... What we're saying is it's not dead yet in our eyes."

The energy summit, an annual event focused on the development of new energy technologies, looked this year at five concepts: thorium as fuel, aneutronic fusion, HydroCoal, advances in solar power and fly ash as a source of valuable materials.

Richard Dell, director of the Appalachia America Energy Research Center, which is under construction in Wise and was announced at a previous energy summit, spoke about the promise he believes it holds for the development of such technologies.

He said it will be a catalyst of economic development, becoming profitable within three years and creating, by conservative numbers, 600 to 1,200 jobs in six years.

"I actually believe we may be able to hit a mark three times that high," he said. "The future is not coming to Wise County; the future is here."

The energy research center in Wise is one of five being built around the region with funding from the Virginia Tobacco Commission.

Also at the energy summit, U.S. Rep. Rick Boucher, D-9th, promised that if Congress approves carbon dioxide regulation, the use of coal for energy will grow in the future.

Instead of sending money overseas to develop petroleum reserves, he said, the federal government should support turning coal into liquid fuel to power vehicles. He said electric cars - powered by coal when they're plugged into electrical outlets - are already a growing trend.

At the close of Monday's summit, former U.S. Sen. George Allen spoke about the need for free-market innovation in the nation's energy future.

He said the United States has the resources and creativity to generate plenty of domestic energy, but the people are frustrated by a lack of political will.

Americans are practical people, he said; they don't care what fuel powers their cars so long as it's affordable and reliable. They are not addicted to oil, but to freedom, he added.

"They're just running on empty when it comes to good ideas in Washington," Allen said.

"What we ought to do is get that can-do spirit instead of the can't-do spirit that we get from the regulators and central planners in Washington. Let's get that creative and entrepreneurial spirit and inventiveness, take the best ideas from America, take the best ideas from the world and put them to work and make sure America's No. 1."

He stressed also the need for Virginia - and the United States as a whole - to use as many energy resources as are available, from coal and nuclear power plants to wind and oil extracted off the coast. Government, he said, should be leading the way.

"There is no silver bullet answer to this; we need silver buckshot," he said to the nation's growing need for energy.

"The main thing we need to look at in an overall perspective is that a free, sovereign and prosperous country needs to be able to defend, feed and fuel itself, so we ought to be doing things that work."


Source: http://www2.tricities.com/t...

APR 20 2010
http://www.windaction.org/posts/25808-dominion-not-giving-up-on-wind-farm-in-tazewell-county
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