Articles from Massachusetts
In the context of the unimaginable magnitude of the human, environmental, and economic consequences of the BP oil disaster and the opportunistic propaganda surrounding it, we need to remember that wind turbines can't replace oil rigs. ...Less than two percent of our US electricity comes from oil. We can't turn wind into tires.
In a notice filed Wednesday, the state proposed emergency regulations allowing long-term contract proposals for renewable energy generation "not limited to within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, its state waters or adjacent federal waters."
A Cape Wind official said yesterday the project's developers are in ongoing discussions with the city about using New Bedford as a staging port for the project and hope to make a formal announcement soon, the New Bedford Standard-Times reports.
"These bylaws were added as part of the Green Community Act. The town is working toward Green Community designation," she said. After Monday's vote, the bylaw for land setbacks for solar energy structures specifies 20 feet from the side, 25 feet from the rear and 50 feet from the front. The bylaw for land setbacks wind power structures is three times a wind turbine's blade's highest point.
Towers reaching 50-story heights, red lights flashing and blades like a 747's wingspan, placed wherever the Secretary of Energy thinks they should go. Home rule bypassed. Planning boards sidelined. Neighbors without right of appeal. Low-frequency noise sickening residents in homes no one wants. Does this sound like the latest Stephen King horror movie? Hardly.
Experts testified on Mann's behalf Wednesday evening before ZBA Chairman Peter Conner opened the meeting to Plymouth residents who wanted to speak for and against the project. The project has evoked strong emotions on both sides and resulted in pleas to the ZBA to consider the impact on people's lives. ...For Lake Drive resident Lawrence McGrath, an abutter and an attorney, there are too many questions about the impact the sound produced by the wind turbines would have.
The power to be generated by Cape Wind will be significantly more costly than current rates for electricity produced by burning natural gas or coal. National Grid plans to pay 20.7 cents per kilowatt-hour for the power when Cape Wind starts producing in 2013, compared to about 9 cents for conventional electricity today. The price paid by National Grid for the power would increase by 3.5 percent each year of the contract to account for inflation.
National Grid and Cape Wind submitted testimony Friday to the state Department of Public Utilities to support a deal they have cut for half the power generated by the Nantucket Sound wind farm. But at least one vocal opponent of the project is claiming the state agency should restart the clock in its review of the agreement because of an error in the public notice of the case.
Consumers will have to pay at least $1.4 billion above market rates for electricity generated by the controversial Cape Wind project, new projections show. ...Now the estimates are in: $700 million to $1 billion extra, even after calculating in so-called "suppression-price savings" provided by National Grid.
On a recent trip to Ireland, I witnessed a scene which reaffirmed my opposition to windmills in the Berkshires. ...I hope that the people of Lenox, Lee, Stockbridge, and the rest of Berkshire County will have the wisdom to protect the Berkshires from Kilgarvin's fate.
The Zoning Board of Appeals didn't get a chance to start to deliberate Wednesday night on whether or not to approve a special permit for a wind turbine project on Head of the Bay Road in South Plymouth.
At last week's town council meeting, close to a dozen people came forward to express concern or speak in favor of litigation currently being pursued by the town. "I'm here to tell you publicly this project poses significant financial risk to the town if it goes forward as proposed," said Assistant Town Attorney Charles McLaughlin. McLaughlin told councilors there are 450 miles of beaches within five miles of an incident that might occur at the offshore wind farm.
Town Meeting passed a zoning change Tuesday on the siting of wind turbines on town land, a move that could scuttle litigation brought by neighbors against a proposed $9.5 million municipal turbine off Chase Road. ...Town Counsel Anthony C. Savastano said the zoning change will make the lawsuit "moot" because a special permit is no longer required and the lawsuit is based on the issuance of a special permit.
But ever since March, when the town of Falmouth's 1.65-megawatt wind turbine started spinning less than 1,200 feet from his home, the whirring, banging and clanking has meant sleepless nights and frayed nerves for Mark Cool. "My concern is, ‘Am I going to be operating at my full capacity and, if not, what safety risks are being heightened?' " said Cool.
Noquochoke Orchards, a fifth-generation family operation, had the turbines built and ready to go in March. But NSTAR says the style of electric relay device is unsafe, and the utility won't purchase the energy from the farm until it installs the same type as used with most other turbines. ...NSTAR says the relay device it wants installed would automatically disconnect the turbines from the electric grid if it sensed an electrical problem with the turbine equipment.
Every resident of Massachusetts should question the judgment of the Mineral Management Service ocean wind turbine decision before any more projects approved by MMS go forward! Did the MMS since 2009 put too much emphasis on wind and other renewable energy sources?
It is outrageous and reactionary to think that Town Meeting members might vote to open the whole town to unchecked wind turbine development merely in an effort to circumvent judicial review. Town Meeting members should vote no to this proposed amendment.
A Canadian company will seek to temporarily block a new state law that requires utilities to buy renewable energy only from firms that generate power within Massachusetts. ...A favorable ruling for TransCanada could disrupt various ongoing negotiations over long-term renewable energy contracts, including between Cape Wind Associates and Nstar.
Do we really want less public input on how many, and where large wind turbines will be built in our town? The Select Board states that these amendments just make the process for wind turbines the same as for other municipal projects. Wind turbines, however, are not like any other projects.
Angela O'Connor, president of the trade group New England Power Generators Association Inc., said it doesn't make sense to insist that clean energy originate locally, because power is distributed on a broader scale. "It's a regional power grid,'' she said. "You can't put green food coloring on a Massachusetts electron.''