Property owners in Oswego County, NY were notified last week that Babcock & Brown, an Australia wind developer with twenty wind farms in the U.S., could execute eminent domain to secure a 150-foot wide swath across private land needed to erect transmission lines to a proposed wind project on Galloo Island.
WindAction Editorials filed under General
The USDA's Forest Service proposes to make sweeping changes to its internal directives governing wildlife monitoring and special use authorizations. These proposed changes will greatly facilitate the siting of industrial wind turbines within our National Forests. The new language contained in the Forest Service Manual section now lists the Forest Service's #1 goal as: "Authorize wind energy facilities on National Forest System lands to help meet the nation's energy needs." The Service has declared these proposed revisions as "non-significant", thus exempting this policy action from National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requirements, i.e. no Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) needed to evaluate the cumulative impacts of these extensive policy revisions. Please write to insist that the Forest Service not finalize these proposed revisions until they complete an EIS - as should be required pursuant to the letter and intent of NEPA.
Wind energy developers are increasingly benefiting from local town officers who have a conflict of interest in seeing developments built on their own lands. News of such conflicts emerged during the past year from communities in New York, Ohio, Wisconsin, and elsewhere. In the town of Burke NY, two town board members voting on a proposed Wind Energy Facilities Law were exposed as clearly having "direct pecuniary interest in the placement of wind towers", according to a letter filed by an attorney representing citizens of Burke. The letter asserts "Town Board member Arnold Lobdell is a party to an Option and Lease Agreement with Jericho Rise Wind Farm, LLC.," and "Town Board member David Vincent has entered into an Easement Agreement with Noble Chateaugay Windpark LLC." (see agreements) Such conflict is destructive to the democratic process and should not be tolerated anywhere in the United States of America. In the case of Burke NY, WindAction.org and others recommends swift action be taken by the Town Board to disavow the draft wind energy facilities law, and re-initiate the effort from scratch with the conflicted members removed from the process.
According to California ISO's Integration of Renewable Resources draft report (http://www.windaction.org/documents/12510) wind generation on a typical summer day peaks during periods of low demand and is at its lowest production levels when electricity demand is high.
An analysis of grid interconnection requests within U.S. portions of North America reveals that proposed wind energy development as of October 2007 totals up to 164,900 MW. This information, based on data compiled within the last two months, is regionally distributed as follows (rounded to the nearest 100 MW):