Library from Massachusetts

Troy's Take: When the irrational becomes the absurd

We have turbines that lose money and a burgeoning legal budget that self-perpetuates with ongoing litigation that includes the town suing itself and its citizens. The town claims that it would, however, be too costly to simply stop the bleeding and dismantle the turbines. I have yet to see an official breakdown of these costs, and since the town still refuses to embrace transparency and actually post a copy of the town’s budget on its website, it is impossible to assess and understand any financial impacts.
30 Oct 2015

Planning board opposes turbine bylaw amendment

If approved, the amendment would allow town government the “special treatment” of exempting itself from its own bylaws, Ms. Kerfoot said. She and Mr. Brown agreed that the town should not be allowed that type of treatment. Mr. Herbst made a motion to recommend indefinite postponement on the article. The vote passed unanimously.
30 Oct 2015

Cape Wind developer Jim Gordon not giving up on project

The president of Cape Wind developer Energy Management Inc. has not given up on the controversial wind farm project in Nantucket Sound. Cape Wind suffered what many saw as a death blow in January when Gordon and his team missed a crucial financing deadline and lost major contracts from utilities Eversource Energy and National Grid as a result, making it nearly impossible to attract the investment needed to start construction
27 Oct 2015

Filing flub kills town's turbine appeal

The town's appeal of a cease-and-desist order shutting down one of its wind turbines will not go forward after attorneys missed a key deadline to file the suit in the town clerk's office. ...Without that action, attorneys said, the case was stopped in its tracks.
22 Oct 2015

Need remains to relieve turbine noise

The turbine was ill placed, but now it is here, there needs to be a way to relieve the noise problem, an issue, which was not really mentioned until the thing was nearly up. You can't dispute what you don't know, but now we know what the benefits and the burdens of its operation are, the responsibility to find a way to make this machine less harmful lies with the town.
17 Oct 2015

Turned A Blind Eye

When the use of wind turbines was originally suggested for the wastewater treatment plant, the Energy Committee assured the public that the town would research what might be involved and there would be many opportunities for input and questions. Neighbors were sent to Hull to view the 660 kw turbine, which was also described in the questionnaire sent to them. Neither neighbors nor Town Meeting in May 2012 were told the size of the initial wind turbine, Wind 1, that was 1.65mw and 397 feet tall. Without proper study the Town made a baseless decision as if it knew what it was doing. Far from it!
9 Oct 2015

Hanover officials optimistic that wind turbine is ‘operating properly now’

“This has been a long and, at times, frustrating journey, but we believe that the route we have taken to work with the surety company has produced the best financial and operational result for the taxpayers in town,” Clarkson said. The turbine cost taxpayers $750,000 to install, and was meant to save the town $50,000 a year on energy costs. As of August, the turbine has saved the town $9,008 since it first went online 2013.
30 Sep 2015

Falmouth selectmen seek approval to resume operation

A day after the Falmouth Board of Selectmen voted in a closed-door session on Monday to shut down Wind 1, one of the town's two wind turbines, while it fights a cease-and-desist order against the device's operation, the board on Tuesday voted to place three warrant articles before the planned Nov. 10 special town meeting. One of the articles would exempt the turbine from zoning requirements retroactively, paving the way for it to be turned back on.
30 Sep 2015

Baker says state is at energy crossroads

Baker told the Legislature’s Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy that he has two energy priorities: meeting the state’s emission reduction targets and reducing the price of electricity. He wants lawmakers to pass a law allowing the state’s electric utilities to run a competitive solicitation for 1,200 to 2,400 megawatts of power — most likely hydroelectricity from Canada, possibly with a component of onshore wind power.
29 Sep 2015

Falmouth wind turbine to be shut down

During a closed-door meeting, the board voted to appeal the Sept. 17 cease-and-desist order issued by the Zoning Board of Appeals while also voting to comply with that order in the meantime, according to a news release sent shortly before 9 p.m. by Town Manager Julian Suso. The ZBA had ordered Wind 1, one of the two turbines, shut down while the town seeks a special permit that would allow it to continue to run. 
29 Sep 2015

Turbines could cost taxpayers up to $15 million if shut down

Under its court-ordered current half-time operating schedule, the two municipal wind turbines are not generating enough green energy to pay for themselves. And if they are ordered to be shut down, it would mean be a huge financial loss to the town, said Douglas H. Jones, chairman of the board of selectmen. “At this point, I have no idea how we would cover the financial loss. We don’t have the money to cover it."
26 Sep 2015

Neighbors ask judge to shut down turbine

Following six years of legal challenges brought by neighbors, the zoning board voted 4-1 on Sept. 17 to overturn the zoning enforcement officer's denial of a cease-and-desist order on Wind 1, which the Massachusetts Court of Appeals ruled in June had been erected without proper zoning approval. The town has 20 days from the Sept. 17 ruling to appeal the cease-and-desist order, but Watt and Senie said Wind 1 should be shut down immediately, regardless of the appeal.
26 Sep 2015

Bourne officials grapple with Plymouth turbine project

The Future Generation Wind project will be fully constructed in Plymouth, but because of the size of its parts, they'll be unable to be transported on highways, Bourne Board of Selectmen Chair Stephen Mealy said Thursday. The project would require about 24 oversized trucks to carry parts as large as 170 feet long, over 15 feet wide and almost 16 feet tall. ...About 80 feet of guardrail on Head of the Bay Road would need to be removed, Mealy said, so the trucks can navigate the road to the entrance of the farm in Buzzards Bay. 
25 Sep 2015

Delivering wind turbine parts through Bourne is complicated

The proposed delivery of turbine parts has become a high-profile issue for selectmen and was the subject of a special code-enforcement meeting among town inspectors last week. Selectmen at this point do not want to be portrayed as opposed to alternative-energy efforts or local business in general, but members are trying to protect local interests as they relate to infrastructure impacts and early-morning Buzzards Bay motoring disruption.
24 Sep 2015

Falmouth selectmen weigh special town meeting on turbine ruling

The town's wind turbine zoning bylaw was last amended in 2013 when town meeting approved a revision that prohibits turbines with a capacity of more than 250 kilowatts anywhere in town. Both Wind 1 and Wind 2 have capacities of 1.65 megawatts, more than six times what’s permitted by the newer restrictions. The bylaw also limits to 6 decibels the allowable noise levels audible to neighbors from the machines.
23 Sep 2015

http://www.windaction.org/posts?location=Massachusetts&p=14
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