Articles from Texas
Exactly how the Devils River got its forbidding name is lost to history, but there is little doubt the harsh terrain and fierce natives who once reigned here played a role. “It is far from any habitation, in a barren waste surrounded by hostile Comanches, but it is a beautiful place,” noted one early visitor. A century and a half later, the natural beauty remains and the rushing, spring-fed Devils owns the reputation as the last unspoiled river in Texas.
Beginning in 2015, GH America Investment Group purchased over 130,000 acres of property in Val Verde County (Texas). GH America is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Xinjiang-based Guanghui Industry Investment Group. ...Aside from gathering intelligence on U.S. border security operations and plugging into Texas’ critical infrastructure, China could use Sun’s wind farm as cover to collect intelligence on nearby Laughlin Air Force Base.
AEP has received three of the five necessary approvals for its planned $2 billion investment — from Oklahoma, Arkansas and FERC — and expects decisions in May or June from regulators in Louisiana and Texas.
The North Texas Heritage Association has sent demand letters to two energy companies planning wind farms in Clay, Montague and Jack counties. Landowners are concerned the miles of large wind turbines will disrupt an endangered bird, the Whooping Crane, that migrate through these counties twice a year. NTHA had a study done on this and principal biologist Jennifer Blair found that these wind turbines would kill some of these birds Or disrupt their habitat.
“I could smell an electrical type smell for a good while, and my mom smelled it too,” Gregory resident Dolores Moreno said. “I was looking at our own house going room to room thinking it was coming from our home since the smell was pretty strong. A while later I heard the sirens so I knew it wasn’t us.” She also said that she heard someone saying that just before the blaze, they could hear a noise coming from the turbine.
Developers of transmission projects that would send wind power from rural Wyoming and New Mexico to cities in California and Arizona made their cases at this year’s Western Planning Regions Annual Interregional Coordination Meeting on Feb. 27. ...Cost allocation remains a big question. The projects are merchant-driven and haven’t been fully embraced by CAISO and other planners yet, but developers think California’s ambitious climate policies will demonstrate their importance. “There’s been very little planning activity on these because of the absence of regional need seen through these projects.
“Laughlin is facing a different threat because it’s a Chinese company that is seeking to erect these wind farms, and China’s national security interests are directly contrary to the United States’ national security interests. There is, relatedly, a serious concern with surveillance. China has invested heavily in expanding its ability to engage in surveillance and to gather intelligence. ...“With regard to Del Rio, these Chinese towers, if constructed, pose a threat not only to air training, but also of potential security vulnerabilities, and both of those are serious concerns. I have been working and look forward to continue working with local leaders here to prevent those threats,” Cruz added.
Local officials say that they have no choice but to let the fire burn itself out. They are currently trying to figure out who the wind turbine belongs to so they can contact them to turn off the electricity. The area is being kept clear in case any debris falls off.
Barnett, during that meeting, said that the company was going to pursue this project with or without the county’s abatement and designated reinvestment zone. In response to questions later, Barnett said, “However, this vote is forcing us to reevaluate our future in Bee County.”
Because so much wind power is already on the grid, the growth of other resources, such as solar and storage, is inevitable, King said. “If you keep installing more wind power, but what you need is power capacity for the middle of the day in the summer, then installing another wind turbine becomes too defeating and not helping,” he said.
A packed courtroom greeted the Montague County Commissioner’s Court Monday as more than 50 people filled the room to hear discussion on a proposed safety ordinance related to wind farms.
Finally, using undercover cameras along one of the country roads, the lawmen connected the fence cuts to one vehicle seen over and over by the cameras. They traced his license, caught him and interrogated. Turns out, the man was mad at the landowner whose fences had been cut because that landowner would not put wind turbines on his property.
Matagorda County Commissioners are expected to authorize County Judge Nate McDonald to sign a letter to Peyton Creek Wind Farm regarding county permits.
An inconvenient truth is hanging over Georgetown, Texas: Its celebrated shift to renewable energy doesn’t look like a national model these days. Electric rates are up. Critics are blasting the costs. And the city north of Austin is trying to figure out how to mitigate the situation.
The close call in Texas in mid-August should be a lesson for ERCOT to rethink how it is valuing dispatchable, baseload power. The addition of more intermittent capacity to the market will likely make the reliability challenges Texas is facing only more difficult to manage. Further, the 100% renewable goal that several states have instituted should be viewed as a farce as the City of Georgetown recently discovered.
Ellis was excited when she first heard about the wind farm. ...She started researching wind farms and cross-checked the sources the company listed at the bottom of its informational flier for the Wild Cat Creek Wind Farm. Reading studies and first-person accounts, she decided it might be hard to live near wind turbines, which emit constant noise and have flashing lights at night. ...Ellis also worries about her son, who has autism and is sound-sensitive. She worries he won't be able to stand the turbines and that they will have to leave the ranch.
On August 12, a heatwave drove electricity demand in Texas to an all-time high. Electricity prices across the Texas power grid surged 36,000 percent, to roughly $6,537 per megawatt-hour—far higher than the average Texas price of $20 to $30 per megawatt-hour. Not only did electricity demand climb enormously as Texans cranked their air conditioners in 100-degree weather, but electricity generation at Texas wind farms simultaneously fell 50 percent due to lack of wind in the hot, listless air.
A motor on a wind turbine caught fire and is blamed for sparking a wildfire Monday in Mulberry Canyon in southwest Taylor County that has burned more than 200 acres.
In the wide-open spaces of Val Verde County lies the Devils River, one of the last pristine, wild rivers in Texas. Recently, it was at the center of a monthslong negotiation. "Absolutely. It's a major win for us and for future generations of Texas and for anyone else who cares about the wide-open spaces in our state,” explained Julie Lewey, with the Devils River Conservancy.
Amid bargain-basement prices for gas, there hasn't yet been an incentive for the state's power market to build anything other than natural gas plants, wind and solar resources. But wind is intermittent, and the wind died down during the height of this month's heat wave, ERCOT found itself with even fewer sources of electricity. ..."when wind gets to be a substantial part of the power system, if you don't have good connections with neighboring systems, that can really get you into a lot of trouble in maintaining system stability."