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Governor addresses wind energy, transmission concerns

Freudenthal noted the visual impact that wind farms, as well as the transmission lines they require, will have on Wyoming's landscape, has been a major cause for concern with landowners and residents in the state. "We're having a different response to it entirely," he said, when comparing wind energy construction to other energy development ..."[People are] having a real problem with adjusting to the idea that the landscape is going to be visually different than it was in the past."

On Monday evening, May 24, Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal visited Wheatland to discuss wind energy issues with area landowners and individuals.

Freudenthal noted that wind energy is "very different" from other energy development in Wyoming, such as gas and oil, and emphasized that there are "equally strong emotions on both sides" of the wind energy issue.

Freudenthal noted that the current slowing down of wind development in the area was largely due to the state of the national economy. He also pointed to a less certain market in states such as California and Colorado as another major factor.

Freudenthal noted the visual impact that wind farms, as well as the transmission lines they require, will have on Wyoming's landscape, has been a major cause for concern with landowners and residents in the state.

"We're having a different response to it entirely," he said, when comparing wind energy construction to other energy development such as oil and gas. He noted the size of the turbines, coupled with the size of the transmission lines, was the cause of this.

"[People are] having a real problem with adjusting to the idea that the landscape is going to be... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

On Monday evening, May 24, Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal visited Wheatland to discuss wind energy issues with area landowners and individuals.

Freudenthal noted that wind energy is "very different" from other energy development in Wyoming, such as gas and oil, and emphasized that there are "equally strong emotions on both sides" of the wind energy issue.

Freudenthal noted that the current slowing down of wind development in the area was largely due to the state of the national economy. He also pointed to a less certain market in states such as California and Colorado as another major factor.

Freudenthal noted the visual impact that wind farms, as well as the transmission lines they require, will have on Wyoming's landscape, has been a major cause for concern with landowners and residents in the state.

"We're having a different response to it entirely," he said, when comparing wind energy construction to other energy development such as oil and gas. He noted the size of the turbines, coupled with the size of the transmission lines, was the cause of this.

"[People are] having a real problem with adjusting to the idea that the landscape is going to be visually different than it was in the past."

For landowners at the meeting, a large concern was the implementation of taxes in the State on wind development, and that this would stop wind farms from being constructed in the area.

Landowner John Frances stated that, while wind developers were "very anxious" to use his land for wind turbines two years ago, it does not look promising now. Frances felt taxes on the industry were a large part of this problem.

Freudenthal said he felt the current taxes on wind energy would not stop wind developers from coming to the State.

"I think [wind development] has just taken a pause to figure out whether the economy's going to come back," he said.

"At the end of the day, they're going to be here as long as they're making money," he added.

Freadenthal also pointed out that other energy industries in the state not only have heavy taxes imposed upon them, but do not receive as many federal subsidies as wind energy does.

Renewable Energy Association of Landowners' chairman Bob Whitton attended the meeting, and voiced concerns over transmission lines to transport the energy produced by wind farms. Whitton noted he would like to see a "reasonable annual payment" from transmission companies to landowners with the transmission lines on their land.

Freudenthal said that while this would be a good plan to give landowners incentive to cooperate with transmission companies, and "[landowners] are going to tolerate more if they've been compensated for it," annual compensation will be an obstacle for transmission companies.

"When you talk to the companies, they're much more afraid of annual fees for right of way, than they are of any tax policy," he said.


Source: http://www.pcrecordtimes.co...

MAY 27 2010
http://www.windaction.org/posts/26516-governor-addresses-wind-energy-transmission-concerns
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