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Wind Farm application in LURC's hands

WESTERN MOUNTAINS -- An application for the long anticipated wind farm proposal for Redington & Black Nubble mountains now is now officially in the hands of the Land Use Regulation Commission.

Last week, Harley Lee, president of Endless Energy Corporation, announced a new joint development between Endless Energy and Edison Mission Group called Maine Mountain Power LLC. Edison Mission Group is a subsidiary of California-based Edison International, while Endless Energy is based out of Yarmouth.

Together, they submitted an application for LURC's approval to build the state's first wind energy farm near Carrabassett Valley.

The proposal, which anticipates heavy opposition, calls for the construction of 30 wind turbines on Redington Pond Range and Black Nubble mountains, about four miles west of Sugarloaf Mountain. It is reported that the 90-megawatt wind farm could generate about 265 million kilowatt hours a year, which would be the equivalent to the energy used by 44,000 Maine homes.

Edison Mission Group has a strong history in wind energy projects investing in its first project in 1998 and has a current portfolio of 316-megawatts of wind energy over nine projects nationwide. The Edison Mission Group's goal is to develop a portfolio of 1,200 megawatts nationwide by 2009.

"Our goal is to ensure that there are no undue effects on... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
Last week, Harley Lee, president of Endless Energy Corporation, announced a new joint development between Endless Energy and Edison Mission Group called Maine Mountain Power LLC. Edison Mission Group is a subsidiary of California-based Edison International, while Endless Energy is based out of Yarmouth.

Together, they submitted an application for LURC's approval to build the state's first wind energy farm near Carrabassett Valley.

The proposal, which anticipates heavy opposition, calls for the construction of 30 wind turbines on Redington Pond Range and Black Nubble mountains, about four miles west of Sugarloaf Mountain. It is reported that the 90-megawatt wind farm could generate about 265 million kilowatt hours a year, which would be the equivalent to the energy used by 44,000 Maine homes.

Edison Mission Group has a strong history in wind energy projects investing in its first project in 1998 and has a current portfolio of 316-megawatts of wind energy over nine projects nationwide. The Edison Mission Group's goal is to develop a portfolio of 1,200 megawatts nationwide by 2009.

"Our goal is to ensure that there are no undue effects on existing uses, scenic character, and natural or historic resources in the area," Lee said. "This project will provide critically needed renewable electricity through Central Maine Power's existing transmission lines." Lee has been working on this project's fruition for close to seven years.

LURC has stated that the 1,600-page application is available for public review. There may be a series of public hearings that could span as long as a year. The topic of a wind farm on the mountaintops has shown a lot of public interest for years. Locally, a group called Friends of the Western Mountains has collected 1,950 signatures for a petition against the project.

According to Dr. Dain Trafton, a Phillips resident, former professor of Renaissance literature and group organizer, said a coalition of groups including the Application Trail Conservancy, The Maine Appalachian Trail Club the Maine Appalachian Land Trust and several other smaller environmental organizations have come out against the project. "Wind power sounds on the surface like a good idea, but the more you look
into it, the more questionable it becomes," states Trafton.

These groups and their lawyers say they have a very good case against the project and the rezoning of the mountaintops. The Phillips resident offered a preview of some of the group's points originally published in the Oct. 5, 2005 issue of the Original Irregular and then featured in other periodicals throughout the state.

The application package to LURC includes the actual rezoning of 1,004 acres of the mountaintops from a protected zone against development, to a planned zone of development.

Maine Mountain Power also plans to submit an application for a utility line to run through Carrabassett Valley that would connect the turbines to Central Maine Powers distribution grid.

"This is a major milestone for us," Lee said. "There is still a lot of work ahead but with Edison Mission Group expertise and resources we are one step closer to providing Maine with clean, renewable wind energy."

Source: http://news.mywebpal.com/ne...

DEC 29 2005
https://www.windaction.org/posts/843-wind-farm-application-in-lurc-s-hands
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