Library from Maine
The concept of heating with the wind, and reducing Maine's dependence on imported oil, is an appealing one. But it's not as simple as hooking up homes to spinning turbines. The Highland Wind project offers a glimpse of how the proposal would work technically, and also a sense of its limitations. Highland Wind LLC is offering residents of Highland Plantation $6,000 grants for energy options that include the installation of electric thermal storage heaters.
The 11-turbines, located along the Sisk Mountain ridge line to the west of the 44-turbine Kibby project, represented a second attempt at an expansion from TransCanada. An earlier proposal would have added 15 turbines along the ridge line, but that was voted down by the LURC panel in July.
The euphemisms of pro-wind developers at a LURC hearing to add Kossuth Township to the expedited wind development zone highlight last fall offered a picture of disturbing political and financial alliances that scar Maine landscapes.
Snow, who lives in Bethlehem NH but owns property by Shagg Pond in Woodstock, had filed an appeal, alleging conflicts of interest on the part of various Planning Board members and that the Planning Board lacked authority to grant a waiver of the town's noise ordinance.
Independence Wind, the Brunswick-based developer responsible for the Highland Wind project, announced Tuesday it would reduce the number of turbines planned for mountaintops near the Appalachian Trail and Bigelow Preserve.
The new application includes $750,000 for land conservation, gives the state a permanent easement prohibiting windpower development on the highest peak and reduces the number of turbines to 39. King says those remaining will be further away from Bigelow and the trail. ..."This is no compromise," Jonathan Carter says. "Angus and Rob's new application is simply an attempt to salvage a project which was ill-conceived."
Holberton said a huge swath of the Maine coastline remains uncharted territory as far as understanding bird migrations ...when visibility is poor, the birds fly at much lower altitudes, under 500 feet. "Most of the birds are island hopping and that is why wind development in shallow water and right along the coast in my opinion poses big issues," said Holberton.
Citizens opposing the plan to install 360 miles of turbines across Maine are made to look like selfish people whose only concern is their view. But now the huge cost of this plan is coming to light. Now the health issues are being exposed as our neighbors suffer from long-term exposure to low frequency noise. Now DEP sound standards are being proven as inadequate for turbines' unique noise.
Once again the "wind facts" get distorted by the press. In the newspaper's Dec. 19 issue, another story was written as if it were the truth. It was stated that 1 megawatt of wind energy would power 750 to 1,000 homes. One might be impressed by that ratio - if it were true.
Scientists from the BioDiversity Research Institute in Gorham have documented what they say is a significant migratory pathway for several species of falcons and northern saw-whet owls. The new study could have a bearing on where and how off-shore wind projects are sited in the future.
The town of Eastbrook, Maine adopted this wind ordinance to protect its residents from noise, shadow flicker and other impacts produced by operating wind energy facilities.
But how much control do residents have over whether a wind project goes in their backyard? Not much, according to David Corrigan, a Registered Maine Guide who runs Fletcher Mountain Outfitters in Concord Township and believes his business will suffer if wind power comes to his community. "When it really comes down to it, the people of Maine have no say," Corrigan said.
Some people view imminent wind power development in Somerset County as a way to boost the economic stability of the region. Others decry its perceived adverse health effects and detriment to the landscape. Either way, change is looming. Between $1 billion and $2 billion worth of wind energy projects may be developed in Somerset County within the next three years.
Groups representing wilderness guides and owners of sporting camps joined a well-established organization from Penobscot County on Thursday in asking Gov.-elect Paul LePage to impose a moratorium on permits for new industrial wind power farms. A LePage spokesman said later that the governor-elect would do no such thing.
The Appeals Board voted 2-1 Thursday night to reject an appeal of the site plan for a wind turbine project on Spruce Mountain. Voting against the appeal were Stephen Newkirk and Ruth Feeney; for was Jim Chandler. Residents have a 30 days after approval to appeal a permit.
A coaltion that includes professional Maine guides and sporting camp owners has joined an effort to stop a proposed wind farm in eastern Maine. The group also is asking Gov.-elect Paul LePage for a moratorium on large wind projects until cost-benefit studies of existing wind farms can be carried out.
The Woodstock Appeals Board will meet Wednesday to hear an appeal of the site plan approval for an industrial wind farm on Spruce Mountain. The appeal was filed by Friends of Spruce Mountain. ...Friends of Spruce Mountain "have been against the project since the plan surfaced last year.
By risking arrest to oppose wind power, he drew attention from media far and wide. ...Many people have asked me why I did this. Good question. I hope I give good answers. The first reason is that nobody seems to be paying attention to the negative aspects of wind power -- least of all the complacent and complicit media in Maine.
Under the new rules, wind turbines are required to be 2,500 feet -- less than half a mile -- from the nearest permanent or seasonal residence. The setback limitation generated the most discussion during the hour-long meeting attended by about 25 residents and non-residents, Selectman Donald Beane said.
Boston-based First Wind announced today that it has obtained $98 million in construction financing for its Rollins wind farm, near Lincoln. The company said it has closed on an $81 million construction loan and a $17 million letter of credit. Key Bank National Association and Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale are the lead arrangers for the financing.