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Gov. Maggie Hassan delayed a vote yesterday to confirm two new public members to the committee charged with permitting the Northern Pass project and any future wind farms in the state.
“If we truly want a member of the public on the committee, is a lawmaker considered a member of the public?’’ Of course not, which is why people who pushed for the new bill, including fellow legislators, are aghast at Hassan’s choices, even while noting they have nothing against either Odell, who would be the “public’’ member, or Merrill, who would serve as his alternate.
Executive councilors say they have concerns about Gov. Maggie Hassan’s nomination of two retiring lawmakers to the panel that has power over new energy projects. While both Sen. Bob Odell, R-New London, and Rep. Amanda Merrill, D-Durham, are outstanding public servants, District 1 Councilor Joseph Kenney, R-Wakefield, said, “It’s the wrong time and the wrong board.”
“The SEC still needs to consider and decide if the settlement reached between the Attorney General’s office and Groton Wind is acceptable. It must also determine what to do with the fact that the project, as built, does not comply with (the wind facility’s operating) certificate issued in May 2011,” Linowes said.
Town officials say the battle likely isn’t over, but the selectmen Tuesday night formally refused to approve a permit request from a Portuguese wind-power developer for a 262-foot meteorological tower to test the winds in town for wind-farm suitability.
A request from a Portuguese wind-power developer to the town for a 262 foot meteorological tower to test the winds in town for wind-farm suitability was brought again to the board of selectmen Tuesday night, and again, approval was postponed to the next board meeting.
Coos County Commissioner Paul Grenier said that in a conversation with him, Otten indicated that he could “live” with a 500-foot setback but not the 1,350-foot setback that had been imposed by the county’s planning board. The setbacks are intended to prevent harm to anyone near the turbines from accumulated ice being flung off their blades.
The Spanish explosives distribution company that has agreed to lease pieces of its approximately five square miles of land to a Portuguese wind-energy developer had once discussed conservation of its lands with the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests.
What was supposed to be a brief discussion with the selectmen, though, turned into an often-contentious question-and-answer session with a group of about 40 disgruntled town and area residents. Repeatedly, audience members issued the same message to the company. “You are not wanted here,” said resident Bob Piehler.
(NH) Wind Watch members will be at the meeting to ensure that EDP knows residents in the towns have repeatedly voted against new wind power projects in the area. Opponents to the projects say they are not against wind power, but the three projects proposed are in clear view of Newfound Lake and Cardigan Mountain hikers.
Opponents of proposed wind farms in the Newfound Lake-Cardigan Mountain region will be holding victory parties next weekend because Iberdrola Renewables has withdrawn from its proposed $150 million Wild Meadows wind farm proposal.
It is unfair to say the state’s political climate is not receptive to wind energy, Rep Rep. William Baber, a Dover Democrat, said. “I think the Legislature has sent a strong message that renewables are an important part of our future,” he said. “That doesn’t mean siting of the wind farms should be done without thoughtful oversight.”
None of these factors appeared to have killed the project, though. Iberdola’s inability to satisfy state concerns about its Groton Wind farm seems to have been the deciding factor, which is another reason to be thankful that the company is not building another wind farm nearby.
The dispute over the Groton project concerned hearings by the state's site evaluation committee in which the fire marshal and other agencies said changes were made to the project outside of due process. As a result, the authorities have threatened to remove Iberdrola's operating certificate for the Groton project, which has been spinning since 2012.
Spanish wind-energy giant Iberdrola Renewables said Tuesday it is abandoning efforts to build the Wild Meadows wind farm in the Newfound Lake/Cardigan Mountain area.
A proposal for a 23-turbine wind farm in central New Hampshire is dead because of an unfavorable political and regulatory climate in the state, the project's developer said Tuesday.
On March 12, citing the turbine failure, the company filed a motion to widen the access roads in the high-elevation areas to accommodate heavy equipment and stated "it is now apparent that the Mt. Kelsey turbines will require periodic maintenance and this maintenance necessitates a roadway wider than 12 feet."
And Senior Assistant Attorney General Peter Roth said Monday he wants the company to move its warehouse-sized operations and maintenance building at the top of Groton Hollow Road across the road from where it sits, despite the contention by Groton Wind and its parent company, Iberdrola Renewables of Spain, that the company could not build on that site.
The town’s three selectmen have notified the state’s Site Evaluation Committee that Iberdrola Renewables misrepresented the amount of support shown by area towns, particularly Alexandria, in Iberdrola’s application for its proposed $150 million Wild Meadows wind farm.
A company with interest in Newfound Lake-area lands for a wind farm has pulled out of its lease agreements with a landowner with property in Alexandria, Groton and Hebron. Alpine Ridge Wind Farm, LLC, a Delaware limited-liability company headquartered in Boulder, Colo., filed documents last month titled “Termination of Lease and Easement Agreement for Wind Energy Project.”