Library filed under General from Missouri
JEFFERSON CITY – Different sides reacted Wednesday to the Missouri Supreme Court's ruling in favor of a wind energy project.
The state’s Office of Public Counsel and the staff of the Missouri Public Service Commission are skeptical. They don’t trust Empire’s estimates of the future price of wind on the wholesale market, and they maintain that the utility has structured the deal so that the tax-equity investor – as yet unnamed – will be paid off during the first 10 years, leaving only crumbs behind for ratepayers.
The company plans to pursue an equity partnership that would take advantage of $800 million in federal tax incentives for the project, making Empire's total investment $700 million. Empire would also retire its coal-fired plant in Asbury more than 15 years early.
The process of laying groundwork for development of a new wind energy project in northern Nodaway County continued Friday as representatives from Tenaska Inc., an Omaha, Nebraska-based independent power producer, met with the Nodaway County Commission in an effort to iron out road and infrastructure issues associated with turbine installation.
Natelle Dietrich, PSC staff director, said in testimony filed Wednesday that Empire's customers will see little of the savings Empire has said the plan will generate in the first 10 years "while the equity partners achieve their anticipated returns, and after 10 years, the expected savings for customers are extremely uncertain."
Empire's filing requests permission for a $1.5 billion project to construct wind turbines in Southwest Missouri and eventually close its Asbury power plant. The company plans to pursue an equity partnership that would take advantage of $800 million in federal tax incentives for the project, making Empire's total investment $700 million, according to its announcement.
The world’s biggest wind-turbine company has filed lawsuits against five rural governments because they stand between it and millions in tax subsidies.
Tenaska has just begun the process of contacting landowners with regard to “initial cooperation agreements that would allow us to continue to evaluate the feasibility of this project.”
While the Hannibal Board of Public Works (HBPW) Board recently approved a draft power purchase agreement for wind energy, should the Clean Line Energy project ever receive the approval of the Missouri Public Service Commission (MPSC), that hasn't stopped opponents from asking the city to reject a final contract.
Glenn Dyer is a 73-year-old former Marine colonel with parted white hair and a soft, slow, deliberate way of speaking. He is grandfatherly. In 2010, he retired from a position with the Department of Defense in San Diego and moved, with his wife, Leslie, onto 160 acres of land that has been farmed continuously by members of Dyer’s family since 1888. The property lies in Dekalb County, about an hour and 15 minutes north of downtown Kansas City. To get there, you take I-29 North to St. Joseph, hang a right, take U.S. Route 36 east 20 miles, and wend your way north. Eventually, you arrive at a gravel road in some nether region between the towns of Amity and Stewartsville. Follow the gravel road a mile, and there’s Dyer on his porch, waving you in.
The Missouri Public Service Commission has approved an application which grants Transource Missouri, LLC a certificate of convenience and necessity to own, operate and maintain a switch station in DeKalb County that will connect the Osborn Wind Energy Center with Transource Missouri’s Nebraska City-Mullin Creek-Sibley transmission line.
Over the past nine years, 10 wind turbines have been erected in Adair and Cass counties, providing the local communities with power and an added tax base. Project organizers are now looking at Ringgold and Clarke counties as possible locations to expand that project before tax credits run out at the end of 2017.
The disagreement between the two sides hinges on the interpretation of the road’s ownership and maintenance. Clinton County maintains N.W. Platte Road while DeKalb County maintains N.E. Platte Road. NextEra contends their road use agreement with DeKalb County covers the entirety of Platte Road, both east and west of Highway 33, and any needed maintenance or repair that might result from its use.
Kansas City Power and Light has agreed to buy wind energy from two plants now under construction in northwest Missouri.
Saying that “wind turbines have an incredibly small footprint” really depends on what you compare them to. I actually wonder if there is any energy production system that takes as much space as wind does.
The proposed project has met stiff opposition from concerned residents who have organized against the effort. The county currently has a moratorium on all wind energy applications until the zoning board decides what, if any, amendments they would propose.
Tradewind Energy based in Lenexa, Kansas, is planning to build around 150 wind turbines that are about 500 feet tall as part of the Rock Creek Wind Project covering 30,000 acres of land. The turbines will be placed between the city of Tarkio in the center of the county and Tarkio Prairie Conservation Area in the eastern part of the county.
“We probably wouldn’t have bought (land) if we’d known it (the wind farm) might be something right outside the window,” said Ron Hayter, a property owner in Colfax Township. “It’s not fair how it’s being handled, especially when three of the four zoning board people having contracts.”
Nearly 90 people crammed into the community room of the Clinton County Courthouse last Thursday evening, not to see the county’s Planning and Zoning board rule on an issue, but to hear the opinion of perhaps the county’s most prominent business. ...In July, the Planning and Zoning Board denied a request from Tower Associates – a subsidiary of NextEra Energy – to build and operate meteorological test towers in northern Clinton County. Since that decision, Tower Associates or Next Era have yet to file an appeal with the county.