Articles from New York
A new Wind Industry Ethics Code is now in place in New York, with a total of 16 wind companies agreeing to abide by the document drawn up by Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo office. The code calls for oversight through an advisory task force and "unprecedented transparency" to deter improper relationships between wind development companies and local government officials, according to a press release issued by Cuomo's office Wednesday.
New York Power Authority President and Chief Executive Officer Richard Kessel met recently with the Press-Republican Editorial Board to outline his agency's plan to "do the biggest energy project in the state since the St. Lawrence/Robert Moses power project 50 year ago." The authority would import up to 2,000 megawatts of power from multiple sources, including hydropower from Canada and renewable resources both here and in Canada.
A town resident is in a dispute with the town's zoning board over her neighbor's wind turbine, which she believes is too close to her property. "I want it down," said Mary C. Grogan, a seasonal town resident who lives next to Roger D. Alexander.
AWEA CEO Denise Bode seems mildly disappointed by the numbers. Citing a slowdown in manufacturing of turbine components, Bode described the industry as "swimming upstream." The contrary current may get even stronger if my recent visit to upstate New York is any indication. Arriving for a family visit, I found that I'd landed in the midst of an uproar over wind farms, both built and proposed.
New York's far-reaching investigation into allegations that wind developers paid local officials to approve their energy projects moved into the state of Vermont this week. New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday that his office issued a subpoena to Reunion Power, a wind energy developer with offices in Manchester Center and Hackensack, N.J., as part of its ongoing investigation.
Let's be perfectly clear. The only way to "mitigate" problems associated with industrial wind turbines is to make sure the projects do not go up within residential areas in the first place. As reported in a recent Daily News letter ("Think big on wind energy" by David Bassett, May 20, 2009) , the U.S. Department of Energy admitted when these immense machines were being developed that they were intended for placement in the remote, unpopulated areas of the Midwest, and offshore -- not amongst rural/residential areas like that of WNY.
The shoals off Main Duck Island, on the Canadian side of Lake Ontario, may host an offshore wind power project. Trillium Wind Power Corp., Toronto, is proposing a 142-turbine project in the shoals southwest of the island to produce up to 710 megawatts of power. "We purposefully went out on the water and chose this unique site because of its attributes," said John Kourtoff, CEO of Trillium Wind.
A wind-power moratorium on just a portion of a town doesn't make sense. That's according to the Jefferson County Planning Board, which considered Cape Vincent's proposed six-month moratorium for wind power development in the lakefront and river front districts at its meeting Tuesday afternoon. The members of the board approved a townwide moratorium, which was not presented to them, rather than the town's proposed partial moratorium.
The town board heard overwhelming opposition Monday night to a proposed law governing wind farms. Almost 175 people filled the Hammond Central School gymnasium, with 45 speaking against the law and seven supporting it. Concerned Residents of Hammond President Nancy J. Parrish said the new law was nearly the same as the version her group took to court last year.
Sixteen companies comprising more than 90 percent of New York's wind-energy industry have signed a ethics code designed to prevent conflicts of interest between companies and municipal officials, state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced today. ...there have been "significant issues about conflict of interest, etc." in the siting of turbines, and a lack of clarity with government officials on what the rules are, he said.
Petitions are being circulated in the town of Cape Vincent calling for a one-year town-wide moratorium on any wind farm development. The petition is calling on the Cape Vincent town officials to enact such a moratorium to thoroughly examine wind farm zoning regulations appropriate for the health, safety and welfare of all the residents of the community as well as the aesthetic impacts to the town and 1000 Islands region.
With rising heating oil costs and electric bills, and the push for more environmentally friendly energy, it's to be expected that there will be more folks like Thorn hoping to harness the power of wind. One has already surfaced: Jerry Collier told the Victor Town Board a few weeks back that he has been thinking about putting up a turbine on his Rawson Road property. But Collier will have to wait, as the Victor Town Board has just enacted a six-month moratorium on wind turbines while it looks at getting local codes on the books to regulate them. It's a wise move on the board's part.
A payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement being developed by the Jefferson County Industrial Development Agency will give away tens of millions of dollars in taxes with minimal return for the price being paid by county taxpayers. A uniform policy plan being prepared by the agency will collect $2.5 million from developers of the proposed Galloo Island Wind Farm in its first year of operation. That represents about 15 percent to 20 percent of what would be collected if the project paid full taxes.
Prattsburgh town officials will meet Tuesday to consider hiring a sound expert to draft a general noise ordinance aimed at regulating wind turbines. The board's action followed an initial report by Seth Waltz, president of Avl Designs, Inc. of Pensfield, on his preliminary study of noise in Prattsburgh, the neighboring town of Naples and wind farm in Cohocton operated by First Wind.
Round two of the reviews of the environmental assessment of the proposed St. Lawrence Wind Farm took up where round one ended. Like the first draft, the supplemental draft environmental impact statement has a high number of comments - more than 60 by state officials and members of the public.
The Town Council will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. Monday at the town office, 12105 Town Barn Road, to consider a three-month moratorium on wind development.
A decision on the Article 78 suit over wind farm proposals in Italy will not come until August. ...The case stems from EcoGen LLC's application to build 18 wind turbines in Italy. The Finger Lakes Preservation Association, an unincorporated group of local residents, named the Italy Town Board and wind developer EcoGen LLC in the Article 78 suit, which alleges that the town violated the Open Meetings Law and the state environmental review process.
The Prattsburgh town board took no action on a proposed tower permit law after holding a public hearing on the law Tuesday night. A number of residents questioned the need for the law since the town was advised by state officials last winter it could not issue building permits because there were no town laws regulating cellular or wind tower construction.
Debate continues looming over a plan to put wind farms up in one Southern Tier town.Community members in Prattsburgh have one main concern when it comes to wind turbines going up in their neighborhood. That concern is the noise the turbines will make.
The state Department of Environmental Conservation wants to see more studies in the proposed Galloo Island Wind Farm's draft environmental impact statement. Upstate NY Power Corp., backed by Pattern Energy Group LP, San Francisco, plans to build an 84-turbine wind farm on the island rated at 252 megawatts. Recently, Pattern bought out Babcock & Brown Ltd.