Library from Texas
AUSTIN – The Texas Public Policy Foundation released a new video that reveals a side of the debate over wind energy that rarely receives any attention – the downside. “Like any energy source, wind energy comes with tradeoffs,” said Bill Peacock, TPPF’s vice president for research. “The reality is that wind energy comes at a great cost, particularly to nearby homeowners. One of the great drawbacks of wind turbines is the noise.” TPPF interviewed Comanche County residents who live near wind farms. “Some people describe it as a jet plane that never lands,” said one resident.
Tall objects near the weather radar can block what the radar sees when scanning at lower levels and "ground clutter" is already seen from the radar at Dyess Air Force Base due to a wind farm to the west of the radar.
WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - Hinton, Oklahoma, just west of Oklahoma City, has been sued by a wind energy group to build wind turbines in their town because of an ordinance they passed that they thought was unconstitutional.
Residents who live near wind farms feel they are noisy, an eyesore, and diminish the value of their properties. The Bellevue ISD School Board is considering entering into a Texas Tax Code 313 agreement which includes a taxpayer installing property like a wind farm to get a 10-year limitation on that taxable property.
The Public Utility Commission of Texas on Thursday delayed its final approval of Southwestern Public Service’s request to build a 478-MW wind farm in West Texas, allowing the company and other parties in the docket time to provide written answers to the regulators’ latest questions and recommend further revisions to the draft order (46936).
Texas regulators on Friday approved Xcel Energy's $1.6 billion, 1.2 GW wind expansion plan, about a month after New Mexico first gave its OK.
The resolution passed by the court reads that “wind farms compound and impair border security enforcement efforts” and that they are “substantial industrial developments that limit future generations and impede recreational and agri-tourism values.” The resolution also noted, “Wind farms deteriorate neighboring property values and negatively impact county constituents.”
The turbines ran for three months before one blade fell to the ground 190 feet below. Then a second blade crashed through a nearby storage building's roof, falling into a conference room. No one was hurt. The city asked the builders to remove the contraption and rebuild it. That happened. Then another blade came loose.
The nation's biggest wind generator, NextEra Energy Resources, has bought the Oklahoma portion of the proposed 700-mile-long Plains and Eastern Line to serve Oklahoma and Midwest customers. But for now, plans to bring wind energy from the windy areas of Oklahoma and Texas into the less-windy Tennessee Valley and Southeastern part of the United States are stalled and unlikely to be resurrected for years.
If a developer spent 5 percent of the project costs -- such as buying turbines or steel for towers -- by the end of 2016, that company qualified for the 100 percent tax credit. The House proposal would retroactively eliminate that provision and force projects to re-qualify for the credit by starting actual work on the projects.
Attached to this page are two letters by the American Bird Conservancy sent to EDF Renewables in regard to EDF's proposed Vista Mountain wind project slated for Hamilton and Mills counties in Texas. The letters raise specific concerns with the impact of the turbines on the ecologically-sensitive Texas Hill Country/Cross Timbers Region on the Edwards Plateau. The letters are important in that they inform readers how significant and habitat-rich the Texas landscape is, a fact that repeatedly gets ignored when the wind industry only touts the number of megawatts installed in the State. The full text of the first letter is pasted below. Both letters can be downloaded from this page.
The company says the project could save customers of Xcel subsidiary Southwest Public Service Co., about $2.8 billion in electric costs over 30 years by offsetting higher fuel costs from natural gas and other sources. But PRC utility staff say the projected savings aren’t guaranteed. T
If implemented, the proposal would require wholesale power prices to reflect the small amount of electricity lost during transmission through heat or other factors, which would essentially raise the cost of sending power from remote generation plants — such as wind farms — to cities. Transmission losses currently are omitted from prices.
Hamilton County Commissioners met Tuesday morning and heard from Keith Sled of the Heart of Texas Defense Lines for Bell, Coryell and Lampasas area for Fort Hood in regard to tax abatements for wind farms. “The turbines have impact on radar and the western trading area,” said Sled.
EDF Renewables has requested a tax abatement from Hamilton County, but the commissioners court had taken no action on the possible abatement as of Thursday, Clary said. The energy company also requested an abatement from Hamilton Independent School District. HISD Superintendent Clay Tarpley confirmed that the school board has accepted an application for review, but it had not determined whether it would offer an abatement.
A Comanche County landowner addressed the board about the wind farm recently constructed there. She said she owns 648 acres and is surrounded on three sides by giant wind turbines. “I can walk around my place and count 57,” she said. “They intrude on every aspect of our lives. “The noise is the worst part, and it varies in tone, volume and intensity,” she said. “Sometimes it is like a giant fan, but most times it is like a constant roar that never stops.
It took crews from Scurry County EMS, Snyder Fire Department, and the Scurry County Sheriff's Office to retrieve Hubbard from the turbine. He was pronounced dead at Cogdell Memorial Hospital, the Daily News reported.
Although activists herald these pledges as major environmental accomplishments, they’re more of a marketing gimmick. ...Texas generates more wind and solar power than any other state. Yet more than 71% of the council’s total electricity still comes from coal and natural gas.
The proposed $184 million Peyton Creek Wind Farm in southern Matagorda County was presented to commissioners court at its regular meeting Monday.