Library from California

SDG&E wind farm scaled back after protests

SDG&E originally planned to put up to $600 million of ratepayer funds into the farm, which was to be 309 megawatts. But critics complained to the California Public Utilities Commission that the financing arrangement put too much of the risk on ratepayers. They also didn't like the fact that the power would actually be sold in Canada, with SDG&E getting certificates.
12 Apr 2011

California firm joins Molokai wind project

First Wind missed the deadline, citing its inability to secure land for the wind proj­ect. First Wind, which is not an official party in the case before the PUC, asked HECO to petition the commission for a deadline extension on its behalf. When HECO declined, First Wind appealed directly to the PUC.
4 Apr 2011

Sand Canyon wind project draws crowd

"We want to know what your concerns are in this very early stage of design," Smith said. "We don't want it," canyon resident Steve Steele said. "Put one in your backyard first and then you can put one in mine." ...Residents expressed concerns including access, safety, wildfire potential, noise, and impact on the environment and wildlife as well as their property values.
23 Feb 2011

Utilities' renewable energy pacts expensive

Since the law was passed, 59 percent of the contracts the utilities have signed with renewable power developers have been more expensive than the levelized price of electricity from a new natural gas plant. The levelized price takes into account the costs of building, operating and fueling the plant. ..."The thrust of the message is, we need some kind of cost containment," said Yuliya Shmidt, a regulatory analyst with the commission's Division of Ratepayer Advocates.
19 Feb 2011

Shifting winds: MSTI investment in peril?

Vincent questions whether the California decision will leave investors and developers reluctant to invest in new transmission. "That puts a big question mark over whether it's worthy of the investment," he said. "Every article that I've read about it has essentially said in one way or the other that this is bad news for Washington, Oregon and Montana wind. It has got to almost change the paradigm."
13 Feb 2011

Calif. cap-trade plan dealt blow by S.F. judge

Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith ruled that the air board approved the larger plan to implement AB32 prior to completing the required environmental review, and that the board failed to adequately consider alternatives to cap and trade. The Air Resources Board "seeks to create a fait accompli by premature establishment of a cap-and-trade program before alternative (sic) can be exposed to public comment and properly evaluated by the ARB itself."
4 Feb 2011

Cape Cod Commission hearing on turbine regs continued to Feb. 3

The larger change is the addition of a minimum required setback for noise mitigation. Turbines with a maximum generation capacity equal to or greater than one megawatt would be required to maintain a 3,000-foot minimum setback from the nearest receptor (person living within visual or audible range) or residential parcel. The exception: if the noise study shows to the Commission’s satisfaction minimal noise impacts to residents, the CCC may approve a reduced setback.
28 Jan 2011

Property values and health impaired by wind turbines, experts tell East County residents

Both McCann and Krogh said that a number of turbine neighbors had walked away from their homes, because they could not live with the impacts and no one would buy their homes. Others must find someplace away from the turbines to sleep and many have had to send their children to live with relatives to clear up various illnesses.
28 Jan 2011

Wind farm project approved; residents unhappy

The first wind project in the works for Imperial Valley took a step forward last week, though some residents were not happy with a county commission's decision. The Airport Land Use Commission found the Ocotillo Express wind project to be consistent with the county's airport compatibility plan Wednesday, said commission chairman Larry Allen. It was a unanimous vote.
23 Jan 2011

Calif. rule may stunt Oregon clean energy market

"All this makes this whole situation so gray. And if you're a business trying to decide whether you should invest half a billion dollars in a wind farm in Oregon or Washington, or Montana for that matter, your financial folks are going to be pretty scared," said John Audley, deputy director of the Renewable Northwest Project.
20 Jan 2011

Fatal collision with met tower

Ntsb_fatal_with_mettower_thumb On January 10, 2011, at 10:57 PST, a Rockwell International S-2R, impacted a meteorological tower (met tower) during an aerial application on Webb Tract Island, Oakley, California. The airplane sustained substantial damage and the pilot was killed. The met tower was erected for the purposes of planning a wind energy facility.
20 Jan 2011
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