Articles from North Carolina
The fuel source for wind energy may be free, but everything needed to produce electricity costs Americans money, time and will affect the health of those living closest to the turbine sites.
Opposition to wind farms has intensified around the country in recent years as the skyscraping towers encroach on residential areas and turbine designs get bigger and taller and ever more powerful. Some who live near these energy farms in other states are complaining of headaches, dizziness, sleep disruption and general annoyance caused by whooshing blades, flickering shadows and strobing hazard lights.
But some lawmakers in eastern North Carolina still aren’t sold on the concept, citing health and safety concerns, especially for military pilots. They failed to pass legislation on the matter in the General Assembly this year, but eight legislators vowed to continue the fight in 2017.
North Carolina’s renewable energy mandate will cause a spike in electric bills and the loss of more than 43,000 jobs by the end of the decade, a new study contends.
As turbines start to dot farmland near Elizabeth City, part of the in-progress Amazon Wind Farm, the Apex project to the south, dubbed Timbermill Wind, is nearing the public hearing phase.
This year’s bill, The Military Operations Protection Act, was pitched by the senator as a way to make sure projects aren’t built that are incompatible with military flight paths. But critics have called it an attack on wind energy since it eliminates much of the state, including major portions of Eastern North Carolina, as potential sites for wind energy projects.
“Make no mistake – if we fail to fully protect our military installations, decision-makers in Washington could award them to states that will, and our local communities will be left picking up the pieces. Three taxpayer subsidized wind projects that create few jobs for North Carolinians should not take priority over the hundreds of thousands of jobs and tens of billions of dollars that we could jeopardize if we fail to stand up for our military.”
While at least two Texas legislators are drafting proposals that would limit the construction of wind turbines near military bases, a similar effort is underway in North Carolina.
The legislation, House Bill 763, prohibits the skyscraping wind turbines from going up in military flight paths. The bill, which applies safety standards that are stricter than those typically used by the Department of Defense, passed the state Senate this week and now awaits a vote in the House.
The bill, which now heads to the House after a 33-14 vote, would prohibit the facilities in a large swatch of central and eastern North Carolina. The measure got support from senators concerned that allowing tall wind turbines in low-altitude training routes for jets and helicopter would strike a blow against preserving units at military installations.
“This new regulation will clearly prevent land-based wind farms in North Carolina,” he said. “Wind farms would be barred in every color (zone) that you see on the map. Much of the remaining area includes major urban centers or are places otherwise unsuitable for wind energy. … No wind developer will commit millions of dollars to develop a project that will have to hit a moving regulatory target … If this passes in its current form, there’s likely to be no future land-based wind energy in North Carolina.”
Judge dismissed a legal challenge to the project on Wednesday. A Perquimans County couple had argued the project should be subject to additional reviews. Now under construction, the 104-turbine wind farm will be the largest in the Southeast.
Under the bill, wind facilities would not be allowed in areas described in a color-coded map, which measures the height of military aircraft training flights. The map was created by a company hired by the state, Brown said, and differs from an air traffic pattern map the Pentagon uses.
A proposal headed to the Senate floor would add requirements to the lengthy permitting process for wind farms to ensure they don't conflict with the training needs of North Carolina military bases.
EDENTON — The family farming operation that includes the chairman of the Board of Commissioners would be the second-largest lessor of land on the Chowan side of a proposed 300-megawatt wind farm project expected to straddle Chowan and Perquimans counties, a permit application shows.
NC bill takes aim at wind power and solar energy. Bill would require 1.5-mile safety buffer for wind, solar farms. Co-sponsor says renewable energy poses environmental risks.
The DEQ initially determined Iberdrola needed to go through the state permitting process for the altered project, issuing a letter to Iberdrola to that effect in March 2013. It reversed that decision in the following month, announcing the project would be grandfathered in.
“Folks feel really strongly about these location. They often grew up going to these beaches and now take their children.” “If you build turbines that are close to shore and you lose those loyal customers, you have to find the new ones." Attracting an entirely new customer base to replace current renters could be a lengthy and difficult process.
On Friday, the NCUC issued an order stating "there is no provision in the Public Utilities Act that expressly authorizes the Commission to allow third-party sales of Commission-regulated electric utility services to the public for compensation."
Pasquotank County couple say the 104-turbine project is subject to a regulatory review; Wind farm backers say NC’s 2013 wind farm law exempted Amazon energy project