Articles from California
LOS ANGELES, Feb 2 (Reuters) - A California constitutional amendment taxing oil production to fund a range of alternative energy efforts may go to voters this November, setting up a nine-month battle between environmentalists and oil companies.
Key to Enron's success was deregulation of the electricity market, so that it could more easily be manipulated by developers and brokers such as Enron without having to worry about the whole expensive package of energy delivery, i.e., infrastructure maintenance. They also transformed wind power from an experimental alternative in tune with the environment into an industry that mocks environmental concerns.
She told me the windmills are 15 minutes out of Palm Springs and not visible from the city. When I asked her if there were any homes in the area, she answered, "Oh, no," in a tone suggesting that my question was quite ridiculous.
The board of commissioners for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power moved Dec. 20 to accelerate by seven years a plan to generate 20% of the utility's electricity from renewable energy.
Daniel R. Patterson, a desert ecologist with the Center for Biological Diversity in Joshua Tree, said it's a "common belief" that bird deaths caused by turbines could lead to rat infestations. But he said he hasn't studied the issue.
Strong winds of public disapproval toppled electricity-producing windmills in the Julian area before they were even built.
In a battle over blades and breezes, the county Board of Supervisors on Tuesday tightened rules regulating home wind turbines that produce electricity.
Complaints over noise prompt a fee hike in the high desert. Users see unfair disincentives.
Environmentalists in California are taking issue with the way wind power is affecting native bird populations in the area. Citing research by the California Energy Commission (CEC), two groups have launched lawsuits against the Alameda County Board of Supervisors, saying that permits issued for wind turbines do not sufficiently account for the environmental impact of the energy source.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's board passed a contract to acquire a $239-million wind farm in Kern County which is being developed by a private contractor later this year.
Carpinteria CEO envisions a future powered by turbines. With oil and gas prices relentlessly rising -- and the cost of producing power from sustainable energy sources continuing to fall -- it appears the time is fast approaching when alternative energy begins to make good economic as well as environmental sense.
Calling it "our baby," the panel overseeing the Department of Water and Power moved forward Tuesday with the Pine Tree Wind Project, approving a pair of environmental and construction deals related to the $278 million initiative.p The venture has been held up as an example of both the promise and peril associated with the growing use of "green power," which is one of the top priorities of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's new Board of Water and Power Commissioners.
The 5,000 windmills that dot the slopes of Northern California's Altamont Pass are drawing fire from environmental groups who say pollution-free power isn't worth the price of killing thousands of birds.
..because the turbines produce power in response to the wind rather than actual demand, much of it -- 84% of western Denmark's wind production in 2003, by one analysis -- has to be exported (i.e., dumped) because it is not needed. Despite a landscape already saturated with turbines, it appears therefore that they produce only about 3% of the electricity Denmark uses.
With California's energy crisis in the headlines, advocates of wind power are hoping it will mean a major boost for this source of clean, alternative energy. But they face a previously underappreciated problem: bugs.
The commission unanimously voted down the proposal after a five-hour hearing attended by more than 150 people at Santa Clarita City Hall. Zond Systems, the largest producer of wind energy in California, had hoped to erect more than 300 windmills--some as tall as 150 feet--on vacant, mountainous land near Gorman.