Library filed under Energy Policy from Maine

State clears the way for wind power profiteers

Wind power in Maine is a chess game, a chess game for those protected by multinational companies and allies in the current administration. ...A game that put people's rights and public health behind those of the wind industry and simply ignored the complaints of those disturbed by the maddening whoosh of turbines.
12 Aug 2010

Wind power law hasn't resolved development conflicts

After proposing major changes to state law that would speed up the review of wind power projects, Gov. John Baldacci's wind power task force members went one step further: They made a map. ...Others describe the map-drawing process as a last-minute rush to get the task force's report done in time for legislators to consider as they neared the end of a short session. "There was a lot of ‘Here, here, here and here' and ‘No, no, no and no," during the map debate.
11 Aug 2010

Task force had mandate to promote wind power, not study it

There was never a mandate for the task force to examine the relative merits of wind power development in Maine. Instead, members started from the assumption that wind power should be developed in Maine, and the sooner, the better. "We felt we were in somewhat of a race with other states and Canadian providers" to build wind energy generation, said Sen. Phil Bartlett, D-Gorham, a task force member and co-chairman of the Legislature's Utilities and Energy Committee.
10 Aug 2010

Connections: Wind industry and Maine's wind act

The policy that eventually became the Maine Wind Energy Act of 2008 was the product of several public groups and included crucial input from public agencies. There were a number of cases where people from those groups and agencies were either connected to the wind industry or would soon be connected to the wind industry.
10 Aug 2010

Some now have second thoughts about fast-tracking wind

Some members of the task force are questioning whether the goals they set for wind power can, or even should be, achieved. "Call it the bloom off the rose, call it the emperor being exposed as having no clothes," said O'Neil. "As the public learns the truth about the impacts and the benefits of this sort of development, the public is losing its interest in industrial scale wind."
9 Aug 2010

Reality check on wind power

In reality, commercial wind power is an unreliable, environmentally degrading, overpriced form of power generation. Nothing short of massive amounts of public money can make those projects happen, because no developer in his right mind would undertake a project without public money.
3 Aug 2010

Feds earmark $20M for deepwater wind power research

The U.S. Department of Energy has agreed to dedicate $20 million to develop and test deepwater offshore wind technologies, a decision expected to direct more federal research money to Maine. Today’s announcement follows a visit earlier this month to a deepwater wind research lab at the University of Maine by U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu.
25 Jun 2010

Answer to energy needs isn't blowing in the wind

Save Wind energy isn't free. And, it's destructive. The cost of electricity in Maine will double because of Gov. Baldacci's climate change policies favoring wind energy. Despite the claims of "Wind Week" propagandists, there is no empirical evidence that wind power will: 1. reduce the cost of electricity in Maine, 2. reduce carbon emissions, 3. make Maine ‘energy independent', or 4) be environmentally friendly.
17 May 2010

Wind power proponents running into turbulence

Wind energy has developed rapidly in Maine. It has benefited from federal financial incentives and clean-energy policies that are broadly supported by the Legislature and the administration of Gov. John Baldacci. The industry has directly invested $700 million in Maine during the past four years, according to the Maine Wind Industry Initiative, a new trade group.
13 May 2010

Wind shift touted at Fairfield forum

Wednesday's discussion at Kennebec Valley Community College was sponsored by the Kennebec Valley Council of Governments and Somerset Economic Development Corp. The message was that wind power is seen as the next big opportunity for using natural resources to create high-wage jobs in Maine, without polluting the air we breath.
13 May 2010

Public advocate's actions questioned

Thibodeau said Davies has not been at the committee work sessions on a regular basis and has not provided the panel with the benefit of an independent review of the extensive proposals from the Ocean Energy Task Force and their effect on ratepayers. "You arrived here at 4:35, and at 5:15 you are still reading the bill," he said. "I am amazed that this would not have been a huge priority for the public advocate's office."
27 Mar 2010

Legislators may keep Maine state waters windfarm-free

Under changes to be finalized today at the committee's 2nd worksession on the bill. the "An Act To Implement the Recommendations of the Governor's Ocean Energy Task Force" will focus Maine instead on constructing floating deepwater windmills on land, and then deploying them at locations ten miles offshore and further.
23 Mar 2010

Bangor Hydro's parent company bids on Aroostook utility

Maine - The parent company of Bangor Hydro-Electric Co. intends to buy the company that owns Presque Isle-based Maine Public Service Co., a move officials say will improve chances of building a power transmission line linking northern and southern Maine and bolster economic development in Aroostook County. In a deal valued at approximately $108 million, BHE Holdings Inc. ...plans to buy Maine & Maritimes Corp., or MAM, which owns Maine Public Service Co.
13 Mar 2010

Oil dealers: Offshore wind plan a mistake

Oil dealers say it would kill their industry and cost thousands of jobs. They and other critics also say the electricity from offshore wind would be very expensive, and note that customers would have to pay higher electricity bills to make it possible. ...the cost of offshore wind power and how to pay for it got a bit more real when Chuck Digate stepped up to testify. Digate is managing general partner of Neptune Wind LLC, a Massachusetts company that is interested in developing an ocean wind farm in Maine. It will cost an estimated $1.5 billion to build a 250-megawatt ocean wind project, he said. Its power would cost 22 cents a kilowatt hour, and with no state support to help financing debt, he said, it would add $8 a month to the average household's electricity bill.
12 Mar 2010

Proponents oversell Maine energy corridor plan

In the discussion of the proposed underground energy corridor between New Brunswick and Maine, there are two major misunderstandings. Some Mainers believe that Canadian power is so cheap that we should do almost anything to get it. Some Canadian suppliers believe there is an unquenchable thirst in New England for power from Canada, especially green power.
11 Mar 2010
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