Articles filed under General from Maine
First Wind's plan calls for the transmission lines to run through Monson. The firm needs to obtain a right-of-way through town in order to achieve its goal. The town currently has a moratorium against such power projects. The planning board has been working on an ordinance to address the issue when the moratorium expires on March 4, 2013.
But Congress is setting aside the credits, deductions and other tax breaks until after those much bigger negotiations. That decision is creating uncertainty among some Maine businesses that take advantage of the tax breaks.
A new, 19-turbine wind farm in Hancock County, which has the capacity to supply the average energy needs of 18,000 homes, has been completed. Boston-based First Wind says its 34-megawatt Bull Hill project has also begun commercial operations. It’s located on the ridges of Bull Hill and Heifer Hill in Hancock County.
First Wind proposes 50 to 60 wind turbines on current timber plots. The town is looking at a benefits package from a wind power developer as part of a project involving installation of turbines on hills in Bingham and extending into Mayfield and Blanchard townships and Kingsbury Plantation.
The decision echoes a verdict reached by the Land Use Regulation Commission when it rejected a First Wind of Massachusetts proposal to build 27 turbines atop nearby Bowers Mountain in April, Depoy-Warren told the Bangor Daily News last week. In both cases, officials felt the windmills' effect on mountain and lake views and businesses that profit from them would be too great.
First Wind's proposal is now under review by state regulators, six months after it was rejected by the former Land Use Regulation Commission. Because of changes in the law that transformed LURC into the Land Use Planning Commission, the state Department of Environmental Protection is now the principal reviewing agency for the project.
A First Wind subsidiary will try again to build an industrial wind site on Bowers Mountain, this time proposing to erect 16 turbines instead of 27, company officials said Wednesday.
"If I must pay to avoid actual harm or even the threat of harm, to myself, my family or my property that is extortion. The federal Hobbs Act defines it as: "...the crime of obtaining property from another induced by wrongful use of actual or threatened force, violence or fear, or under color of official right."
"The proposal sets the electricity price at a minimum of $290/MWh, which is significantly higher than historic and current prices," Fletcher wrote. "Over the 20-year contract term, Maine ratepayers could be required to pay $203 million higher costs." "I don't know if Maine ratepayers can shoulder $10 million per year without more assurance that this will work," Fletcher told the Bangor Daily News.
The primary restrictions in the ordinance were a maximum sound level of 25 decibels at night and 35 decibels during the day; a 1½ mile setback from each wind turbine tower to the nearest nonparticipating land parcel; and a 300-foot maximum height to the tip of the blades.
Voters on Saturday defeated 37-24 an ordinance that would have put a six-month hold on wind-power development. Many who spoke seemed to be in favor of the moratorium, but it was defeated by secret ballot.
The town's Industrial Wind Ordinance Committee on Tuesday night considered an attorney's comments on its draft regulations for wind power projects.
King's personal bailout came in the form of a $407,000 "success fee" he received in 2011 from a wind energy project that remains in business today only because it received a $102 million federal loan King played a major role in securing.
"The idea that King can somehow wash his hands of his wind business and avoid any conflict of interest in this campaign is ludicrous for me. He spent (much of) the last decade as a wind industry propagandist," Thurston said. King said last week he is not apologizing for Record Hill or the federal support.
"We do pick them up on radar," said Margaret Curtis, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray. "Our goal is to bounce the radar pulse off raindrops, but there are other things out there it can bounce off too, including wind turbines."
Brad Blake, a spokesman for the Citizens Task Force on Wind Power, said most of Maine has marginal wind potential, and the technical improvements Bolinger touted will create more conflicts with people who oppose industrial wind development. The towers at Bull Hill, he said, are 476 feet high and visible from Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park.
How can you look the people of Maine straight in the eye and tell them that they are living in the Saudi Arabia of Wind, when you know that this same line is being told to residents of at least 14 other states?
Republicans criticize the independent former governor as a wind farm developer who benefited from a controversial federal loan guarantee. Angus King, however, says he's proud of the Record Hill project.
The Wind Ordinance Committee is nearly finished writing regulations for wind power projects in town, members said at Tuesday night's meeting. A public hearing on the proposed ordinance is set for Sept. 10. Based on public comments then, a final version will be developed and a public informational meeting held before a November vote.
King profited from a law he passed as governor, took taxpayer money he did not need from President Obama's discredited "Green Energy" loan program and personally benefited from Obama's failed stimulus spending bill. That's a political trifecta. In addition to being the "King of Spending," look for Republicans to crown the former governor as the "King of Wind" and the "King of Cronyism."