Library from Maine
New England faces major near-term challenges in all parts of its energy infrastructure including natural gas facilities, electric transmission lines and electric power generation, according to a report released today by the New England Energy Alliance.
And, while I agree with Mr. Shutkin that wind power, as a source of clean and renewable energy, should and will play a role in our future energy portfolio, its role will necessarily be small because of its fundamental limitation as an energy source: wind power is ‘intermittent’, i.e. it provides energy only when the wind blows, and, as such, wind power is a source of supplemental, not ‘base load’ energy.
This presentation indicates that for New England the increasing demand for summer-time electricity is greater and increasing faster than winter-time demand. The fast-rising need for power in summer will likely result in construction of new power plants to keep ahead of demand - although inland industrial wind plants will not be able to contribute much to this demand period due to their very low capacity factor during summer months.
Many of our politicians have run for office under the slogan, "Let's keep Maine, for Maine." If that is a true desire, then we should research these windmills much deeper. Call your state representative today. Let him or her know you care about what is happening, and you want more answers. There are too many holes in this process to let the windmills go ahead. Is this right for Maine? It certainly isn't right for me.
Comments to FERC by the New England Conference of Public Utility Commissions and the Vermont Department of Public Service
But the most eyebrow raising turn of events took place in June when King's conservation commissioner, Ronald Lovaglio, replaced LURC staffers who gave Kenetech's project a negative review. They had pointed out that the potential impact on the fragile mountainous soils and endangered birds were serious project flaws. Following the staff replacements, another LURC employee resigned, protesting against heavy-handed tactics.