Articles filed under Impact on Landscape

Vermont facing environmental crisis

Construction might be slowed by treating wind and solar like other industrial uses, but it will occur in a deliberate and not a “gold rush” fashion. What’s the hurry? Congress has now renewed developer tax credits so that the deadline for building has been extended for five years.
4 May 2016

Apex hijinx continues in Somerset

"Thanks for the assistance."    Yes, that's the message Taylor Quarles, Apex Clean Energy's project manager, sent to the Millwright's Local 1163 the day after Somerset had its public hearing on its new wind law. Quarles was thanking the union for sending 40 to 50 union men to occupy seats, so many seats that Somerset Town Supervisor Dan Engert had to ask everyone in attendance at our small town hall to get back into their cars and drive over to the Barker school cafeteria, to reconvene the meeting, so that everyone could have a seat. These guys marched into our meeting with new hats from Apex -- embroidered with orange wind turbines -- and "Fear Not the Wind" stickers on their jackets.    Quarles' letter of thanks of Feb. 2, the day after the hearing, to Brian Scruton, Millwrights Council Rep, stated that he was "personally grateful" for "our strongest showing ever for a public event." Quarles added "those who are opposed to progress in this area" (that's apparently anyone who opposes Apex's 620-foot industrial wind turbines here) "will stop at nothing in their attempt to keep renewable energy projects from coming to upstate New York. You heard the mis-information and the attacks on working people and the farmers of our area. Your ongoing support will be important as we move forward."    Wait. People who oppose this project will "stop at nothing?" Now there's an accusation. We are not The Mob. We're just residents who don't want our raptors chopped, our lands blighted, and our residents' health possibly affected by hulking towers amid our homes. Yes, our voices are strong, but hey, when you work hard for what you have, and suddenly some Virginia company comes around and tells you what's going to go down in your neighborhood, you will speak out strongly.    Quarles' letter also implies that if Somerset residents don't want wind turbines here that we are attacking "working people and farmers." We also work. We also appreciate the hard work of those who farm in Somerset.    Now the Town of Yates has scheduled its own public hearing April 21 on its own newly revised wind law.  Two surveys in that town revealed that Yates residents are also strongly opposed to Apex. The letter mentions"continued ongoing support". Is this a hint that Yates will see these and more union guys at this next hearing? Anyway, the Yates Town Supervisor is prepared, since he has scheduled the public hearing at the Lyndonville school auditorium. This way there will be enough seats, both for residents of Somerset and Yates, and for any out-of-town Apex "guests". Apex is trying hard to create the illusion of public opinion beginning to turn in their favor.    There is good news in all of this: On March 28, former NYS Attorney General Dennis Vacco, presently the attorney for the Town of Somerset, has requested Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to begin a formal investigation of Apex Clean Energy for their deceptive business practices. There are more Apex hijinx. Anyone who wants interesting reading can view more of the accusations as well as the Exhibits -- like Quarles' letter -- on the NYS Public Service Commission's website, Case 14-F-0485.    It remains to be seen whether Apex will clean up its act and follow NY State's Code of Ethics for wind companies, or continue business as usual, just skipping the telltale thank you notes.      -- Christine Bronson is a Barker resident
12 Apr 2016

Success! German State Of Bavaria “Puts Brakes On” Wind Energy, Industrialization Of Rural Landscape

Already over 300 citizens initiatives have formed to resist the construction of new parks across the country. Moreover, recent reports tell us the German government is poised to scale back on renewable energies, aiming to cap it at 40 – 45% of total energy supply by 2025, according to the Berliner Zeitung.
12 Apr 2016

Wind turbines may discourage coastal renters

According to the study, it’s results show that from a survey of 792 beach home renters, of which 484 responded, none of the respondents were willing to pay more to rent a home in sight of offshore wind turbines – thus providing evidence against the belief some wind energy supporters have that turbines could become a tourist attraction – and many of them said they’d vacation elsewhere if turbines were in sight of the beach. 
10 Apr 2016

“Overwhelmed” with turbines

After the discussion with the Gamesa representatives had concluded, community councillor Bob Boan expressing his growing concern over number of windfarms ...He raged that the area from Challoch up to Givan was in danger of becoming a “windfarm dump” and suggested the community council should take a stance on wind power developments.
10 Apr 2016

Wind-power opponents vow to fight potential project on Misery Ridge

“We felt it was important to get it out there and let everyone know that there could be some serious problems if SunEdison goes bankrupt,” Richard McDonald, a member of the steering committee for the Moosehead Region Futures Committee, said Thursday. ...Withdrawing from the zone isn’t a guarantee that a wind project won’t or can’t be built, but it makes it more difficult to get them approved, said McDonald.
7 Apr 2016

Feds OK huge, controversial solar project near Mojave preserve

That Environmental Impact Statement assumed that Bechtel would be able to use existing transmission lines on the site to get power from Soda Mountain to Los Angeles. But those transmission lines belong to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, which announced in June — the same week as the Soda Mountain EIS was released — that it wouldn't be buying power from the project. LADWP said that the project would be too environmentally destructive to justify their becoming a customer. ...And without that transmission, it's unlikely the project will ever obtain a contract with a utility to sell its power.
6 Apr 2016

Senate approves siting bill, snubs towns and wind-turbine sufferers

Throughout the afternoon, the Democrat-controlled body blocked amendments from state Sen. John Rodgers, D-Essex/Orleans. Rodgers attempted to give authority to the more than 100 Vermont towns seeking to end the Public Service Board’s rubber-stamping of solar and wind development. The reaction by towns has come to be known as the Vermont Energy Rebellion.
1 Apr 2016

http://www.windaction.org/posts?p=7&topic=Impact+on+Landscape&type=Article
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