Articles from New York
Numbers fought philosophy during Monday's hearing on the proposed Dairy Hills Wind Farm environmental review. Supporters cited their sheer numbers during the public hearing meant to offer comments on the wind farm's supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement. In the meantime, opponents argued that subsidies, potential loss of property value and other negatives would hurt the town.
As a taxpayer in the town of Hammond I am very disturbed about how the issue of industrial wind turbines in our town will be decided. ...Councilman Ronald Tully II, Councilman James Langtry and Supervisor Janie G. Hollister have a potential conflict of interest here, as they all either directly own property, or have relatives who own parcels of land (or both), in the town that falls within Hammond's wind overlay zone that are large enough to erect many of these proposed turbines.
Planning Board members and alternates have a wide range of views on what shape a wind development zoning law should take. The town-appointed Wind Committee submitted its recommendations on a zoning law April 22. Planning Board members and alternates submitted comments on those recommendations in July.
I am a north country native and have lived on the riverside of Route 12 in Hammond for 18 years. I am opposed to this Wind Energy Facilities Law in its present form. ...The revisions in this law were made by the attorney and are basically cosmetic. There have been no significant changes to any area, particularly the important health and safety issues like setbacks and noise levels.
Former Perry Supervisor, now Horizon salesperson, Anne Humphrey's ad in last week's Perry Shopper was just more of the same typical of Big Wind sales pitches. Bless her heart, Ms. Humphrey is only saying what she needs to say to keep her job. We found it particularly amusing that Ms. Humphrey said, "It's not all about the money," yet, that's ALL she talked about. She said "it's about what is right for the environment," yet didn't say a single word to substantiate how so.
Why do our town officials value the wind companies more than the citizens they represent? Furthermore, it's hard to understand why so many people are indifferent about the issue. Many people say, "I don't care one way or another because I won't see them from my house or from the village. They won't affect me." To me this translated to I don't care what happens to my neighbors or my community.
Personal wind turbines taller than 35 feet are illegal, the town's Zoning Board of Appeals decided Monday. The ZBA voted unanimously at its monthly meeting that Roger D. Alexander's 92-foot-tall residential wind turbine is in violation of the town's zoning law. "It is theoretically a turbine, but we have nothing in the zoning laws to do with that," ZBA Chairman Edward P. Bender said. "So we're going to treat it as an accessory structure."
As a public hearing approaches on the proposed Dairy Hill Wind Farm's environmental study, a group of residents is again raising concerns. Their issue isn't so much with the project's Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, compared to the project itself. They believe the planned wind farm would be inappropriate for the area, and that the town would ultimately be short-shrifted, despite any compensation sponsor Horizon Wind Energy is promising.
At what point does it become a matter of personal responsibility to stand up and speak out to preserve the priceless beauty and health of a God-given resource that once irreversibly damaged by corporate and political greed can never be replaced? ...Now after the introduction of industrial-scale wind turbines and high voltage switchyards and transformers to Sheldon, and the dumping of thousands of tons of industrial waste from the 100 year-old industrial steel site into the agricultural fields where food is grown or cattle graze ... we choose to exercise our rights as a democratic society and therefore stand up and speak out as necessary to preserve this land that is the Orangeville that we love.
In addition [to] local approval and state and federal permits, the proposed St. Lawrence Wind Farm will need an act of the state Legislature to run a transmission line to a substation outside of Chaumont. ...About 1.6 miles will be through Ashland Flats Wildlife Management Area in Cape Vincent and Lyme. The state Department of Environmental Conservation controls the area.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.