Library from New York
PARISHVILLE — The firm hoping to build a wind tower farm in St. Lawrence County has pulled out of Parishville and will now only seek to build turbines in Hopkinton.
Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust told the state Public Service Commission that a major industrial wind energy facility proposed for the center of the Tug Hill region will harm the region’s forests, wildlife, water quality in the Salmon River, hunting and fishing opportunities, economy and the future of Fort Drum.
ALBANY — After a process that began in November of 2014, the New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment (Siting Board) has approved the construction of 48 high-capacity, 500-foot tall wind turbines to be located in Cherry Creek, Charlotte, Stockton and Arkwright.
Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne, D-Theresa, has introduced legislation that would prohibit the state from granting subsidies to wind energy projects that could impact the military's training needs at Fort Drum. “'The legislation that was finalized on Friday comes after of months of research on an issue that is critically important to Fort Drum's long-term viability." the assemblywoman said.
ALBANY — If all goes as many have predicted, another wind farm project in Chautauqua County — this one from Cassadaga Wind LLC — will be approved by the end of the week. According to the application, Cassadaga Wind is seeking a major electric generating facility in the towns of Charlotte, Cherry Creek, Stockton and Arkwright.
Experts disagree about whether the introduction of wind turbines to an area has any impact on property values.
APEX: Somerset Town Board considers local laws to bar industrial wind energy systems. Apex Clean Energy frequently cites the Town of Somerset residents who support the company’s plans to erect up to 70 wind turbines in the rural, lakeside community. But those supporters were nowhere to be found at a public hearing Wednesday over proposed zoning laws that would amount to a town-wide ban on large wind energy systems.
DECISION: Board to consider laws to restrict wind energy development at Jan. 10 meeting. The Somerset Town Board will consider on Wednesday a series of zoning laws that would all but ban development of large-scale wind energy systems as well as structures more than 150 feet tall.
YATES — In an effort to reach his target of 2.4 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2030, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is calling for a procurement of at least 800 megawatts of offshore wind power between two solicitations to be issued in 2018 and 2019.
“I regret to inform you that we will be unable to pay our bill with the town for the overdrawn escrow account amount of $8073.41,” said the letter, signed by Project Manager and Vice President Marguerite Wells. “We have spent our last dollars filing our final tax returns, and the wind opponents drained everything else. We are closing the company in the coming weeks.”
Off New York's Long Island, an organization representing East Coast scallopers has sued the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to try to halt a proposal for a nearly 200-turbine wind farm. Commercial fishermen in Maryland's Ocean City and North Carolina's Outer Banks have also sounded the alarm about losing access to fishing grounds.
At the harbor management committee meeting, Dan Farnham Sr., a Montauk fisherman, warned that those mats pose a clear hazard and predicted that for trawl fishermen, transiting through the wind farm at night or in inclement weather would be too dangerous. “When you get hung up . . . on the bottom, especially in rough weather, it can be life-threatening,” he said. “You lose your maneuverability to control the vessel in heavy weather. If you were in the wind farm . . . and you get hung up, and your trawl gear is a third of a mile behind the boat, you have absolutely no control about where that vessel is going to drift to while you’re trying to get unhung.”
HENDERSON — The Town Council last week adopted a resolution to oppose wind energy development near Fort Drum.
The Town of Somerset's proposed new zoning laws don't mention Apex Clean Energy by name, but no doubt they were written with the company in mind. The zoning code amendments, introduced at the town board's Dec. 13 business meeting, constitute an outright ban on commercial-scale wind turbines in this small, rural community.
The Parishville Town Council spoke out against wind development near Fort Drum, unanimously approving a resolution opposing such projects.
The new language also gives a more formal definition for “adverse impact on military operations and readiness” to cover flight operations, research, development, testing, evaluation and training, and defines other terms related to the evaluation process.
The developer of the Galloo Island Wind project will not move on to the last stretch of the Article 10 review process until it addresses several deficiencies in its project application. A letter by John B. Rhodes, chairman of the state Public Service Commission, identifying the deficiencies in the project application, can be accessed by clicking the document icon on this page.
Brian E. Ashley, executive director of the Fort Drum Regional Liaison Organization, said his agency is not opposed to wind power but is concerned about anything that could negatively impact “the largest economic driver in the north country. “Our overriding concern is the integrity and impacts on Fort Drum,” he said.
The commission quietly voted Friday to approve the CES “Phase 2 Implementation Plan,” which reduces from 1.1 percent to 0.15 percent the share of electricity that utilities and large-scale electricity users—together known as “load-serving entities”—must obtain from renewables during 2018. Last fall, the commission made a similar reduction to the 2017 requirements, cutting it from 0.6 percent to a minuscule 0.035 percent.
Who should decide how each New York town will contribute to a more sustainable future? If your answer is the wind turbine companies and the leaseholders, then you invite division, acrimony and toxicity, and you underestimate the power of subsidiarity, home rule and — most importantly — the people.