Library from Ohio
The Ohio Ballot Board, by a 3-1 party-line vote, determined that the proposed Ohio Clean Energy Initiative would change two sections of the state constitution, which would require those behind it to gather at least 306,000 signatures twice. ...The proposed amendment would obligate the state to borrow $1.3 billion a year for 11 years to invest in wind, solar, biomass, and other clean energy projects. Decisions on which projects to fund would be made by the Ohio Energy Initiative Commission, a limited liability company registered in the state of Delaware. That commission would get at least $65 million a year from the bond issues.
But members of Union Neighbors United, a group that has fought the project for several years, are appealing that decision to the Ohio Supreme Court. Court documents filed last month show UNU is arguing the OPSB and project developers did not follow the proper procedures when seeking an extension. They also argue Everpower failed to prove the extension was necessary. Officials from Buckeye had argued an extension was needed, in part because ongoing litigation delayed the project.
A two-year suspension of the government wind energy mandates that were imposed on Ohio utilities will become permanent if the September recommendation of a bicameral legislative panel there is followed. The primary reason cited for the decision was uncertainty over President Obama’s Clean Power Plan.
"Wind resource is extremely limited in Ohio; there are not many project sites with the wind resource necessary to support a utility-scale project. The convergence of sufficient wind resources, sufficient transmission capacity and interested landowners willing to lease their land — all are needed for a viable wind energy project," NextEra said in a motion before the Ohio Power Siting Board in 2011.
Government requirements for the use of solar, wind and other forms of renewable energy by Ohio power companies would be suspended indefinitely under recommendations released Wednesday by a legislative panel. The Energy Mandates Study Committee's report cites legal uncertainty and a need for "greater clarity" surrounding proposed federal clean power rules among reasons for the recommendation.
Randazzo contends the Ohio Power Siting Board made a big mistake by ignoring a state law which says the turbines must obtain the consent of adjacent landowners if the turbines don't meet requirements for minimum setbacks, i.e. the distances between the turbines and property lines. Ledet contends that 62 percent of the wind turbines violate those minimum setback requirements.
The year-to-date average price of natural gas as of the end of August was $2.82. Power plants that burn natural gas have driven down electricity prices, making it difficult for coal and nuclear plants to compete. Rose said he now expects that electricity prices will remain where they are until 2019. Beyond that, out to 2030, Rose's sophisticated digital price modeling shows steadily increasing electricity prices.
If the project goes ahead, it could become the second wind farm in Huron County. The Power Siting Board recently reaffirmed its decision allowing the Greenwich Windpark project in southern Huron County to go forward. That project calls for 25 wind turbines. A group fighting the project is mulling an appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court.
Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair, 220 E. Bayfront Parkway, is providing its 200-foot-long, 1,300-ton crane barge as part of the project, officials announced Wednesday.
"So our vision is over the next 10, 15, 20 years, you see more and more and more wind turbines built in Lake Erie, providing all the electricity up and down the coast and providing a lot of jobs for people to live here," Karpinski added.
The North Carolina project is being built by Iberdrola Renewables and will have 104 turbines and a capacity of 208 megawatts. It will provide renewable energy credits to Amazon that will offset the electricity used by data centers in Ohio and Virginia.
Ohio’s clean-energy benchmarks are more likely to be reduced than repealed, according to the leaders of a special legislative panel that has been studying the topic. The Energy Mandates Study Committee held its final meeting on Monday, and its members have until Sept. 30 to deliver recommendations to Ohio House and Senate leaders.
Four wind turbines atop One Government Center have not worked in nearly three years and may have to be dismantled. ...high winds 250-feet in the air frequently caused mechanical breakdowns. And the poorly designed turbines became too expensive to repair.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is developing an environmental impact statement to evaluate the potential of issuing incidental take permits for protected bird and bat species if regional wind industry development grows. According to a news release by the service, the states within the plan are Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. It is called the Midwest Wind Energy Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan.
Neighbors get some relief after complaining about noise emitted from a nearby wind turbine.
A new bill introduced in the Ohio House of Representatives seeks to change wind turbine setback regulations, which would enable wind energy companies to work within Ohio counties to license new wind farms.
But for some Champaign County residents, they hope the delays mean the projects don’t get built. Several residents have opposed the project in public comments to the siting board during the second phase of the project. “I urge you to deny this project,” said Erin Hennigan, of Cable, in a letter to the board. “It has torn our county apart … What money that will be brought into the county will be offset by the number of people that will leave.”
A U.S. District Court judge ruled a federal agency was within its rights when it issued a take permit to a proposed Champaign County wind farm that critics said could harm an endangered bat.
The 15-page opinion credits the finding by FWS "that the minimization and mitigation measures 'fully offset' the impact of the taking of Indiana bats, and thus, it was not necessary to determine if the plan was the 'maximum that can be practically implemented.'"
It will be difficult for developers of large-scale wind farms ...to overcome the law passed last year that requires wind turbine blades to be at least a quarter-mile from the nearest property line. "They are in a pretty bad hurt," said Dayna Baird Payne, a lobbyist in Columbus who represents the American Wind Energy Association.