Articles from Iowa

Man Fights Proposed Power Lines by Cole Mathisen

Iowa is currently the third largest producer of wind energy. One land owner is standing in the way of a proposed project in our area. Dave DeBoe lives north of Ventura. He's in the path of proposed power transmission lines. They would stretch from a 100 turbine wind farm west of Crystal Lake , all the way to The Lime Creek Power Sub-Station south of Manly. This summer DeBoe found surveyors working on his property. He was surprised to find out they were marking the path for a row of 85 foot tall power lines going across his land. Now he's fighting to get the company to move the project somewhere else.
15 Nov 2007

Crystal Lake wind farm waiting on permit approvals

Land acquisition for the 100-turbine wind farm proposed by Crystal Lake is complete but the project still must jump through some regulatory hoops before construction can begin. Steve Stengel, director of corporate communications for FPL Energy, said the company is waiting to hear about a request for utility permits for overhead and underground utility lines in Hancock County.
9 Nov 2007

Cause of turbine fire still under investigation

Officials from Florida Power and Light Energy have teamed with the manufacturer of wind turbines in an attempt to learn what started a fire that destroyed a turbine Oct. 3 at the Hancock County Wind Farm. ..."We have a large number of these units," said Florida Power and Light spokesman Steve Stengel. "It has never happened before, so we believe it is a very isolated incident."
12 Oct 2007

Wind turbine burns near Garner (update)

A wind turbine south of Garner burned Wednesday morning causing two of the blades to fall off. ...He said the fire burned for half an hour to 45-minutes before the blades fell off. “When the blades fell, there was all kinds of debris flying all over the place,” he said.
3 Oct 2007

Catching The Wind In A Bottle

... a coalition of local utilities is grappling with one of the thorniest challenges in the field of renewable power: how to store the excess energy windmills create when demand is low so it can be used later, when the need is greater. The group is building a system that will steer surplus electricity generated by a nearby wind farm to a big air compressor. Connected to a deep well, the compressor pumps air into layers of sandstone. Some 3,000 feet down and sealed from above by dense shale, the porous sandstone acts like a giant balloon. Later, when demand for power rises, this flow is reversed.
3 Oct 2007

Wind turbines raise some legal questions for landowners

McEowen says landowners are often concerned only with how soon the turbines will be put up and how soon they'll get paid. He says, "and they don't really pay much attention to the detail of these agreements and frankly, they should." McEowen, who's a professor of agricultural economics at I-S-U, says in many cases, the agreements need a lot of work and negotiation. He says some of the wind energy lease agreements being "peddled" around southwest Iowa are for up to 50-years, which could be detrimental to future generations of family farmers.
18 Sep 2007

Governor visiting Europe to recruit wind power companies

[Iowa Governor] Culver says Iowa isn't the only state vying for the European companies. "It's a very competitive environment," Culver says,"just with wind alone, we're talking about a 20 billion dollar impact on six or seven states over the next seven years, so we want to be very aggressive in terms of selling Iowa, and encouraging people to come here."
17 Sep 2007

Proposed plants prompt environmental concerns

CEDAR RAPIDS - Officials will soon consider plans to build two coal-fired power plants that critics argue would offset some of Iowa's efforts to cut air emissions and reduce global warming. A proposed 750-megawatt plant, led by LS Power Group, would be built on farmland near Waterloo. Alliant Energy has filed an application with the Iowa Utilities Board to build a 630-megawatt unit in Marshalltown......... Developers of new coal-fired plants in Iowa say coal has been the best choice because it allows them to make electricity at the reasonable and predictable costs their customers want. Soaring prices have made natural gas undesirable. In addition, wind energy is not viewed as an option because wind speeds are seasonal and unpredictable.
19 Aug 2007

Fight brews over coal plants

Developers of new coal-fired plants in Iowa say coal was the best choice because it allows them to make electricity at the reasonable and predictable costs their customers want. Soaring prices have made natural gas, the fuel of choice for the last two decades, undesirable. Wind energy is not viewed as an option for the kind of ``always-on'' demand that coal plants serve, because wind speeds are seasonal and unpredictable.
16 Aug 2007

New wind farm planned for Western Iowa

Officials with California-based Clipper Windpower are announcing plans to create one of Iowa's largest wind farms near the western Iowa town of Adair. A second company, Invenergy of Chicago, wants to construct another wind farm nearby in Adair and Cass counties. Invenergy development manager Ben Hach says they already have easements from landowners near Casey, south of Interstate 80.
8 Aug 2007

Clipper plans for Iowa's largest wind farm

California-based Clipper Windpower Inc. is working on plans to create Iowa's largest wind turbine farm, producing up to 300 megawatts of electricity near Adair. The company already has other wind energy operations in Iowa, including a 200-employee wind turbine assembly plant in Cedar Rapids. Clipper's announcement is the latest example of Iowa's growing wind energy industry, including wind farms and the manufacture of wind turbine generators. Alliant Energy, for example, announced plans in April to develop the state's largest wind farm, a 200-megawatt operation, also near Adair. Clipper's project, however, would be larger in terms of electrical generation. Newton is hoping to become the site of a 723-employee factory run by a company that manufacturers wind-turbine blades and other products. Currently 967 megawatts of electricity, or about 5 percent of the state total, are produced by about 950 wind turbines in Iowa, according to the American Wind Energy Association. Clipper, in a statement, says it has secured more than 2,000 acres in the Adair area under Windpark Easement Agreements that provide royalties for each wind turbine placed on a property owner's land. Clipper is still seeking additional land.
7 Aug 2007

MidAmerican gets okay for more wind power

State regulators have given Iowa's largest utility the green light for boosting its capacity to generate electricity using wind power. Allan Urlis, spokesman for MidAmerican Energy, says Iowa's quickly becoming a national leader in harnessing the blowing breezes to power our homes and businesses.
1 Aug 2007

MidAmerican plans more wind power

MidAmerican Energy Co. plans to expand its wind energy site in Pocahontas County and establish new wind farms at six other locations, including two more in western Iowa. The Iowa Utilities Board gave MidAmerican the go-ahead to add up to 540 megawatts of new wind energy generation. In conjunction with the regulatory approval, MidAmerican said it would add 75 megawatts, or 50 turbines, to a project under construction near Pomeroy, MidAmerican spokesman Allan Urlis said Tuesday. It originally called for 123 megawatts. The project, being built by enXco Development Corp., is scheduled for completion by the end of this year. MidAmerican officials also are scouting for potential wind energy sites near the cities of Carroll, Spencer, Adair, Charles City, Orient and Walnut, Urlis said.
1 Aug 2007

Adair County landowners get informed on wind farm implications

ORIENT - Landowners in Adair County may be better equipped to understand MidAmerican Energy's efforts to install wind turbines on their land. An informational meeting at Orient-Macksburg High School Thursday evening included presentations from Wind Turbine Specialist Tom Wind; Iowa State University Agriculture Law Professor Roger McEowen and MidAmerican Energy General Manager of Wind Development Tom Budler. Budler said there are five meteorological towers up in the area, which are being used to study the feasibility of installing wind turbines in Adair County. He said the studies, which began this month, should conclude by mid-August.
6 Jul 2007

Coralville council critical of wind turbine

The Coralville City Council directed the mayor to submit a letter to the Johnson County Board of Adjustment recommending a wind turbine not be placed in an open area north of Coralville at its meeting Tuesday. Todd Hammond of Iowa Energy Alternatives had planned to install the turbine near the First Christian Church on Lincolnshire Place, off North Dubuque Street.
13 Jun 2007

Opponents line up to block Alliant proposed transmission system sale

A major component of Alliant Energy's New Energy for a New Generation plan first announced in January has attracted a long list of critics. By last week's deadline to petition against Alliant Energy's proposal to sell all of its Interstate Power & Light Company electric transmission assets to Michigan-based ITC Midwest LLC, 23 businesses, organizations or associations had filed an intervention with the Iowa Utilities Board. Alliant leaders said the sale is hoped to help defray the $1 billion cost of the proposed power plant in Marshalltown, another component to the plan alongside new wind farms in the state.
5 Jun 2007

MidAmerican proposes wind turbine project in Adair County

Wind turbines are a very real possibility for Adair County in the near future. MidAmerican Energy will be erecting six meteorological towers immediately to measure wind velocity and to gather information on wind patterns in Adair and Union counties. Representatives from MidAmerican met with Adair County residents at Orient-Macksburg High School May 24 to discuss plans for installing wind turbines. Brian Rohrig of rural Orient attended the meeting and said MidAmerican's plans seemed well-received.
2 Jun 2007

Power line deal nearly complete

Negotiations for placement of power lines for a proposed 100-turbine wind farm near Crystal Lake are about 90 percent complete, according to a energy company spokesman. FPL Energy LLC, a subsidiary of Florida Power and Light based in Juno, Fla., wants to install 161-kilowatt transmission lines to bring power from the wind farm to the Lime Creek Power Station, which is located south of Manly.
19 May 2007

Officials to address wind energy questions

Dallas Center residents who want a firsthand account of how a proposed $200 million power plant would affect their community will have that opportunity Thursday. That's when Kent Holst, who oversees an Iowa municipal utilities energy plant project, and his associates will give a presentation on the project to store wind energy in the form of compressed air in an underground rock formation. The officials will take questions from the public following their presentation at 7 p.m. Thursday at Dallas Center Memorial Hall, 1502 Walnut St.
15 May 2007

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