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The Spanish wind-energy company seeking to build a 75.9-megawatt wind farm in Alexandria and Danbury has "paused" its application to the state to focus on its existing wind farm in Groton. Meanwhile, the state's Site Evaluation Committee set a schedule of hearings that could result in suspension of the operation license for the company's Groton Wind development.
The Spanish wind-energy company that asked the state to consider its 75.9-megawatt, 23-turbine Wild Meadows wind farm in Alexandria and Danbury has "paused" its application to focus on its existing wind farm in Groton.
A proposal for a 23-turbine wind farm in central New Hampshire is on hold as the project developer addresses issues at another wind plant it operates. In a statement released Friday to The Associated Press, Iberdrola Renewals said it will "pause" the Wild Meadows project in Danbury and Alexandria while it works on outstanding issues at a 24-turbine farm in Groton.
Work is underway at the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport to reposition solar panels on the roof of an airport parking garage, a $1.9 million correction that keeps glare from the solar panels out of the eyes of air-traffic controllers. Shortly after the panels were installed in the summer of 2012, air traffic controllers started complaining about early-morning glare from the panels.
In New Hampshire, "wind fails the cost-benefit test. Wind is a high-cost form of intermittent energy that can only deliver power around 30 percent of the time, generally when the grid least needs it seasonally. It will never replace a single fossil fuel or nuclear plant anywhere in New England."
The energy company that wants to put 23 wind turbines in central New Hampshire needs more time to complete an application for the project, according to a letter written to state regulators. Iberdrola Renewables has proposed the Wild Meadows wind energy project in Danbury and Alexandria.
"We believe Environment NH, the wind industry and now, evidently, Rep. Backus are misstating the purpose and intent of the bill before the Legislature," Wind Watch said in a statement. "HB 580 aims to protect NH's environment and our unique scenic landscape from the apparent reckless placement of wind energy facilities by allowing the time needed to develop proper siting guidelines.
"The application is incomplete because it fails to provide sufficient information for the Water Division, the Division of Historical Resources and the Fire Marshal to satisfy the application requirements of each state agency, under state or federal law, to regulate any aspect of the construction or operation of the proposed facility. The application is also incomplete because it does not include the ongoing 2013 raptor survey and game camera study and the a clear identification of the legal relationship between the applicant and the property proposed to comprise the facility."
“Going back for some time, we have been making a point that the permitting process for large scale wind projects is not adequate,” said Jack Savage, a spokesman for the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests. ..."At this point, because of a lack of comprehensive siting guidelines, it’s pretty much open season on New Hampshire’s landscape.”
Danbury selectmen on Wednesday adopted the results of a ballot question put to residents that showed 116 in favor to 249 against the project, with just under half of town residents voting. Selectmen in Alexandria officially adopted their residents' stance against the project Tuesday night.
The Appalachian Mountain Club publicly announced its opposition to the proposed Wild Meadows Wind Farm project planned for Danbury and Alexandria at a selectmen's meeting Tuesday night."We are completely opposed to Wild Meadows," said AMC Director of Research Kenneth Kimball.
Though residents and town leaders in Danbury and Alexandria are on record as strongly opposing the Wild Meadows wind farm project, the company behind the project says it will go forward.
At a gathering Tuesday night of about 75 people from Alexandria and neighboring towns called by selectmen, one person spoke in favor of Wild Meadows, which Spanish wind giant Iberdrola Renewables wants to build in town and in neighboring Danbury. More than 20 residents spoke against the project.
With a majority of the residents opposing the development of a wind farm here, the Board of Selectmen concluded Tuesday night's meeting by agreeing to send a letter to Iberdrola Renewables, Inc., and to the N.H. Site Evaluation Committee (SEC) stating their rejection of a proposed contract with the developer.
"Newfound Lake communities have made it very clear to Iberdrola that yet another Newfound Region Wind Facility is not wanted ... Iberdrola is going back on its word that they would not try to site here if the people did not want them," officials of Wind Watch, a 2,000-member group, said. Iberdrola's existing wind farm in Groton is being investigated by state officials.
Rumors have spread around town since the power-generating windmills stopped turning at the end of last week. Some thought the state had shut the operation down, as state officials are considering whether Groton Wind should have its operating certificate suspended or revoked.
"Newfound Lake communities have made it very clear to Iberdrola that yet another Newfound Region wind facility is not wanted," said New Hampshire Wind Watch leaders in a statement. "This has been clearly and overwhelmingly reflected in town votes and town meetings on this subject. ..."Given the possible suspension and or revocation of Iberdrola's existing Newfound Region's wind plant's operational certificate for several alleged safety violations, and given the tremendously negative response to their proposed second industrial installation we are astounded that they have elected to file."
In issuing its opening brief regarding upcoming hearings on complaints against Iberdrola Renewables' Groton wind project, the state Attorney General's Office asserts that the state Fire Marshal has the authority to seek a suspension of Groton Wind, LLC's operating certificate and to halt operations at the facility.
“It appears the venues chosen are in areas that are not impacted by industrial wind projects or Northern Pass. It would make sense to hold a meeting in an area like Newfound Lake that currently has one wind plant operational (to its north in Groton) and is facing three new proposals for industrial wind facilities, to include the potential for up to 100 40-50 story wind turbines, in addition to the existing 24 turbines.”
“I think you’re doing a marvelous job of telling us what’s right for you and your company,” said resident Jan Connor. “You’re just not telling us what’s right for us.” ...Others challenged Iberdrola’s stance that there is support in the area for the project. One resident called for a town vote on the issue. In March, residents voted 3-to-1 against the proposal on a ballot question.