Library filed under Energy Policy from New York
State regulators voted Tuesday to block consideration of rate increases this year for Rochester Gas and Electric Corp. and New York State Electric and Gas Corp. The Public Service Commission, voting unanimously, said the Rochester-based companies hadn't proved that the safety and reliability of their operations were threatened without more money.
Connecting the nation's largest proposed offshore wind farm to the Long Island and New York City power grids is "feasible" but won't come cheap, according to a joint study by the Long Island Power Authority and Con Edison, which projected that land-based upgrades alone would eventually top $800 million. That price tag for the project off the coast of the Rockaways matches the cost of the entire offshore wind-farm off Jones Beach that LIPA scrapped in 2007.
The Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) and Consolidated Edison Inc (ED.N) said Monday they will move forward with plans for a new phase of study on a major offshore wind farm. In a release, the companies said the first phase of the study released Monday concluded the interconnection of up to 700 megawatts of wind power located at least 13 miles (21 km) off the Rockaway Peninsula in the Atlantic Ocean would be feasible with upgrades to their transmission systems.
STIMULUS: Tax credits, direct aid offered to renewable developers
Opponents of New York Regional Interconnect's scheme to force a 400,000-volt power line through our area had to be cheered last week when a federal court essentially ruled that the issue should be decided on a state rather than a federal level. The Fourth Circuit Court in Richmond, Va., struck down rules that would have allowed the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to approve the power line.
The Cohocton Wind Farm Controversy continues -- this time, over print reports the turbines were not producing power. ...Local print reports quoted an official from the New York Independent Service Operator saying even though the turbines are spinning, the energy wasn't actually going into the power grid.
Green companies are in retreat, with a wave of staff layoffs and production cuts that could have dire consequences for governments' efforts to fight climate change by quickly bringing low-carbon power projects on stream. Siemens, Clipper Windpower and even BP are among the big names that say they are reacting to a slowdown in the clean energy sector, which had hitherto seen massive growth.
What were the problems with Reunion Power's 24 windmills proposed for Cherry Valley's East Hill? Foremost, they presented an industrial use in a rural setting. Would a steel mill be appropriate on the rise above Route 20? Or a coal mine? Beyond that, there were concerns about noise, possible impacts on the health of people living in the vicinity, occasional transformer fires, interference with TV signals and degradation of property values.
New York State Electric & Gas, which serves 45,000 customers in the Capital Region, on Tuesday filed for a rate increase to shore up its financial condition. The increase ...comes just four months after Spanish utility giant Iberdrola SA acquired NYSEG and other utilities in New York and New England in a $4.5 billion acquisition of Energy East Corp. ...Late Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-NY, issued a statement saying the proposal should be rejected by the PSC "without hesitation."
A renewable portfolio standard is said to be needed for creating and improving renewable energy technologies. In practice, however, it does little to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and makes energy production excessively expensive. Coal-fired power plants produce more than 83 percent of the electricity sector’s carbon dioxide emissions. But because coal is cheaper than natural gas or oil, it is the least likely to be displaced by solar or wind power. Natural gas has a relatively low carbon content. But it is likely to be the first to be displaced by renewable sources of energy because it is more expensive than coal. That means that even a renewable portfolio standard as high as 20 percent would reduce emissions by only a small fraction of what is needed to lower the risk of catastrophic climate change.
Imagine this scenario: pharmaceutical companies selling any drug they feel like, having no scientific testing to support their drug's efficacy, making any claim that's in their financial interest, and having no federal or state oversight (e.g. Food and Drug Adminsitration) regarding any of these matters.
New York State Electric & Gas Corp., acquired last fall by a large Spanish utility, wants to increase rates and plans to reduce capital spending this year as it faces serious financial issues. ...It is unclear how any rate increase sought by NYSEG would be impacted by the $275 million that the PSC has ordered Iberdrola to return to upstate customers as a condition of the merger.
Whitley wants to import more hydropower from Quebec and foster more wind power in New York. He said existing transmission lines need to be upgraded to carry more clean energy into and across the state to places like New York City that need more power. "Let's start working on our infrastructure," he said. "Studies show that these investments will pay for themselves."
Wind development in New York has hit a bit of turbulence. The nationwide financial crisis has put the brakes on a wind farm under construction in northern New York and another developer has aborted possible projects in eastern and central New York after trouble securing land. And wind energy companies are now being asked to abide by a code of ethics by Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.
The guidelines included in State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo's Wind Industry Ethics Code provide vital oversight into the wind energy industry. The proposed ethics code establishes public disclosure requirements that will allow residents to know the full extent of any involvement between public officials and wind energy companies. ...Three wind energy companies have already signed on to the Attorney General's Wind Industry Ethics Code. We hope Babcock & Brown, sponsor of the proposed Ripley-Westfield Wind Farm, signs on in the very near future.
Newly named New York Power Authority chief executive Richard Kessel is drawing up a 10-year plan that includes a wind farm "of significant size" off the Atlantic coast and a new sub-Atlantic power cable, he said Thursday. ...Kessel said he has already had a phone conversation with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg about the wind farm, which he envisions producing between 200 and 500 megawatts of power - potentially 150 turbines. A Bloomberg spokesman said the mayor and Kessel will meet on the topic in coming weeks.
State Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo has taken the lead at the state level to bring some oversight to the proliferating proposals for wind power developments across the state. Mr. Cuomo has drafted what is now a voluntary set of ethical guidelines for wind power companies and municipal officials in the wake of a corruption investigation in Franklin County, where wind companies are alleged to have improperly influenced local officials to get permission to build wind towers.
Attorney General Andrew Cuomo is headed in the right direction with a new code of ethics for wind energy companies doing business in New York state. ...Cuomo has also established a task force of watchdog groups and district attorneys, including Monroe County's Mike Green, to ensure companies adhere to the newly established code. But more must be done. The state still lacks a comprehensive policy to handle how and where wind farms enter communities. It's an area that state lawmakers must begin discussing vigorously before the growth in the wind market becomes unmanageable.
Everybody knows we need to get off oil, especially foreign oil. Naturally, as oil and gasoline prices climb, there is that feeling of desperation about wind and gas drilling. Of course, what's lacking is an energy police with authoritative government planning _ just as what was missing on Wall Street were government oversight and regulation of loan practices and packaging. We can't just let some companies put a few windmills on that ridge, a few gas wells in that pasture and a couple of huge solar panels on that hillside. It is too haphazard. We need energy leadership before it is too late.
The New York Independent System Operator has a new wind-power forecasting system. ...The system was installed this month. Wind power is variable in nature, which means adjustments must be made to the grid to accommodate its changing levels. The system will help the NYISO predict how much power each wind project will feed into the system.