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Renewable energy measure headed for vote in Fargo - Power sources include solar, wind, biomass, liquid fuels, geothermal and hydrogen

FARGO - A requirement that at least 20 percent of electricity sold in this city come from renewable energy sources by the year 2020 is headed for a vote in November. Representatives of the South Agassiz Resource Council have turned in 3,677 signatures to the city auditor's office to get the issue on the Nov. 7 election ballot. About 2,850 signatures were needed, Auditor Steve Sprague told city commissioners in a memo.

FARGO - A requirement that at least 20 percent of electricity sold in this city come from renewable energy sources by the year 2020 is headed for a vote in November.

Representatives of the South Agassiz Resource Council have turned in 3,677 signatures to the city auditor's office to get the issue on the Nov. 7 election ballot. About 2,850 signatures were needed, Auditor Steve Sprague told city commissioners in a memo.

The City Commission will be asked Monday to accept the petitions and approve the ballot language.

The amendment to Fargo's Home Rule Charter would require that at least 20 percent of all electricity sold in the city come from renewable energy sources by the year 2020 and at least 30 percent by 2030.

Renewable power sources include solar, wind, biomass, liquid fuels, geothermal and hydrogen. At least half of the electricity would have to be generated in North Dakota.

Dean Hulse, a Resource Council volunteer, said North Dakota is considered the top U.S. state for wind resource, but only a "miniscule amount" of wind energy development is taking place.

"We just decided it would be time to try something locally," he said. "There hasn't been anything that has succeeded at the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

FARGO - A requirement that at least 20 percent of electricity sold in this city come from renewable energy sources by the year 2020 is headed for a vote in November.

Representatives of the South Agassiz Resource Council have turned in 3,677 signatures to the city auditor's office to get the issue on the Nov. 7 election ballot. About 2,850 signatures were needed, Auditor Steve Sprague told city commissioners in a memo.

The City Commission will be asked Monday to accept the petitions and approve the ballot language.

The amendment to Fargo's Home Rule Charter would require that at least 20 percent of all electricity sold in the city come from renewable energy sources by the year 2020 and at least 30 percent by 2030.

Renewable power sources include solar, wind, biomass, liquid fuels, geothermal and hydrogen. At least half of the electricity would have to be generated in North Dakota.

Dean Hulse, a Resource Council volunteer, said North Dakota is considered the top U.S. state for wind resource, but only a "miniscule amount" of wind energy development is taking place.

"We just decided it would be time to try something locally," he said. "There hasn't been anything that has succeeded at the state level in North Dakota, and nothing regionally."

The proposal doesn't threaten the state's existing coal-fired energy production, Hulse said. Rather, it earmarks future growth in electricity demand for renewable sources, he said.

Xcel Energy, which has about 45,000 customers in the Fargo area, would need 43 wind turbines - each generating 1.5 megawatts of electricity - to meet the 20 percent requirement, said Mark Nisbet, the company's North Dakota manager.

The company would need 24 more wind turbines to meet the 20 percent requirement in Grand Forks, where a similar ballot measure is proposed, he said.

Xcel Energy considers itself a leader in renewable energy, and would rather see a regional approach, Nisbet said.

The company has 12 wind turbines near Velva, N.D., that produce enough electricity to power 4,000 to 6,000 homes, he said.

Commissioner Mike Williams, a member of Fargo's Renewable Energy and Conservation Committee, said the ballot proposal is a way to encourage companies to focus more on renewable energy.

The measure's goal is "certainly achievable," Williams said, and he believes the city can reach the 20 percent mark before 2020.
 


 


Source: http://www.grandforks.com/m...

AUG 26 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/4185-renewable-energy-measure-headed-for-vote-in-fargo-power-sources-include-solar-wind-biomass-liquid-fuels-geothermal-and-hydrogen
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