Articles from Texas
The battle over the wind farm in the Chapman Ranch area continues. Now the general manager of a local television station is saying the wind farm poses a public safety issue.
The problem was price. A GreenChoice batch spiked to more than three times the standard electricity rate. Austin Energy officials blamed the jump in prices on a more robust West Texas wind market and clogged transmission lines that made transporting wind energy more challenging. Roger Duncan, the former general manager of Austin Energy, said it was time to consider abolishing the program.
The $7 billion is being paid for by all customers, under the regulated portion of the Texas system, which covers transmission and distribution. The Texas Public Utility Commission said the typical residential ratepayer was charged an extra $6 a month or so. “There are some things about the CREZ lines that can leave a bad taste in your mouth.”
A developer that planned Texas’ first offshore wind farm stopped paying on two state offshore leases, one of which expired today, an official said Friday.
Nelson is pushing hard for the re-assessment. She has in the past criticised the wind production tax credit (PTC), even although it is a federal policy and not in her purview. A proportion of her three-page memo was about the PTC. It stated: "The federal [PTC] distorts wholesale electric markets... While this commission has no ability to change what Congress does, we do have an obligation to Texans to periodically review whether our rules appropriately assign cost to those who cause those costs."
Wind power developers warn that making wind companies pay the same transmission rates as other generators will destroy Texas’ lead in wind power and undermine the economics of wind generation. [Public Utility Commission head, Donna] Nelson, however, claims that giving wind companies a pass is no longer necessary because the industry has been around long enough to figure out its economics.
Study to examine whether they should pay a share of expenses to move electricity
The lawsuit claims the primary companies behind the project - E.On Renewables and Duke Energy - misled the community, property owners and stakeholders on what they were getting. Sixty plaintiffs allege they've suffered "various damages and injuries" because wind turbines are "in close proximity" to their homes.
Despite an effort by a wind farm developer to come to a compromise with the City over several concerns, the City is moving ahead with plans to annex some of the property where a new wind farm project is planned.
Texas is the largest producer of wind energy in the United States, and research on how wind farms affect local, regional and even global climate is a large area of study. After speaking with Texas scientists and climatologists, we found conflicting results.
South Padre Island City Manager William DiLibero said the company’s decision to withdraw from the wind farm project was based on concerns over threats to migratory birds. “If there’s a threat to migratory birds we’re pleased to see the (company) is pulling its application,” DiLibero said.
In a memo to the commission Thursday, Nelson said the federal tax credit for wind power was distorting the power market. She said that could potentially push base-load generation like coal and nuclear off the grid. And she ordered an examination of the costs to maintain and upgrade the power grid for wind farms and other renewable sources.
“We’re talking about a very obtrusive piece of equipment,” he said, “and it’s going to be noisy, and it’s going to be unattractive, and it’s going to devalue their land. The way I see it, that means it devalues tax revenues, too.”
NextEra Energy Resources is planning to shut two of its wind farms in Texas after both were significantly damaged by ice storms in November. ...Ice storms that hit the region in November caused significant damage to the turbines at both facilities as well as the transmission system.
"These are the first wind facilities to seek retirement in the ERCOT region," Robbie Searcy, a spokeswoman for the grid operator, said Monday. ...Ice storms that hit the region in November caused significant damage to the turbines at both facilities as well as the transmission system in West Texas, Stengel said.
The lights will stay on for the Texas households and businesses that are Energy Future's customers, partly because the Texas grid operator can forge special contracts to keep power flowing from ailing, but essential, plants. The company also will have cash, thanks in part to more than $11 billion in bankruptcy loans.
The city is against a wind farm project, but it's not within their power to stop it. Now they're asking lawmakers to change that.
As we've reported, the city council passed a resolution opposing that wind farm, which lies within the city's extraterritorial jurisdiction. The city is also attempting to annex that land.
With the completion of Texas’ $7 billion Competitive Renewable Energy Zone project, there are now more transmission lines than needed. That has enabled developers to sell their power at higher rates and brought the practice of selling electricity at zero or negative to a virtual halt.
The City of Corpus Christi may have effectively killed a proposed wind farm project in the Chapman Ranch area, just outside the city limits, in a single vote at Tuesday's council meeting.