Library filed under Transmission from New York
The group Citizens for the Preservation for Wainscott filed the motion in the State Appellate Division on Dec. 20 seeking to block construction of the on-land portion of the South Fork Wind Farm which would run underground cables through their neighborhood. The group said in its motion a high-voltage cable under Wainscott Beach and the hamlet’s roads could disrupt the "bucolic environment" of the neighborhood and cause "irreparable environmental damage."
Representatives of Ørsted and Eversource, the companies that will be constructing the South Fork Wind farm off Montauk, told local residents this week that the final designs for the installation call for the electrical cable to be buried far deeper below the Wainscott beach where it will emerge from the ocean than originally planned, and will require fewer of the large underground “vaults” than early designs showed.
The company that once was awarded — then lost — a contract to build what was to be Long Island’s first wind farm off Jones Beach announced Friday that it’s taking another crack at the market.
By 2035, the chief automakers will have turned away from the internal combustion engine. It’ll be up to the grid to fuel all those new cars, trucks and buses.
The Trustees say that they have demanded that Ørsted delay the cable installation, slated to begin in early 2023, in order to complete a second spring season worth of fish migration surveys. The company has said it will wait to “energize” the cable until after the spring 2023 fishery surveys are conducted, but cannot put off the start of cable installation between the wind farm site south of Block Island and Wainscott. “They were told directly at the time that this would be a deal breaker,” Trustees Clerk Francis Bock said on Monday morning.
Bonnie Brady, executive director of the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association, said she felt blindsided by the announcement and that there has been minimal communication between Equinor and fishermen. “Why didn’t this process start more organically from the beginning, in a way that actively includes fisherman, so that no one is ultimately put out of business or put into a scenario where they lose traditional historical fishing grounds that are sustainably fished and have been,” she said.
Opponents of the Wainscott landing proposal, led by the Citizens for the Preservation of Wainscott, have presented reams of evidence in support of having the cable brought ashore in Amagansett or Hither Hills instead of in Wainscott. The wind farm developers — the Danish energy giant Ørsted and it’s partner, the New England utility company Eversource — have argued that the Beach Lane landing would be the shortest and least disruptive route between the sea and the East Hampton substation.
East Hampton Town and the East Hampton Town Trustees this week made public the easement and lease agreements they have negotiated with wind farm developers Ørsted and Eversource for the rights to bury the South Fork Wind Farm power cable beneath a beach and town roads in Wainscott in exchange for nearly $29 million in compensation from the company over the next 28 years.
After getting approval from the Town Board to dig test pits along the roadways last winter, the company shelved the work in what its president called a “gesture of good faith” toward Wainscott residents who have organized in opposition to the company’s proposal. Ørsted, which purchased Deepwater Wind and the South Fork Wind Farm in 2018, said on Friday that it has renewed its request to the town to proceed with the test digging in March.
“The contract with New York is far from being signed,” Pineau said. “The mayor of New York City has said he wants to start negotiating, so that’s a very good sign. If he goes public it means he’s committed. … But it’s never easy. In principle everyone loves renewable energy, but when it comes to the invoice and the price tag, sometimes people have second thoughts.” In the case of New York City, that price tag includes $2.9 billion for U.S. developers to run the line through the state of New York, plus hundreds of millions more for Hydro-Québec to bring the line from the border to the Hertel converter station on Montreal’s South Shore.
Pressed by former CAC member Si Kinsella to promise that no easement would be granted until the PSC review is complete, Mr. Van Scoyoc acknowledged “there have been a lot of changes” in the plan in recent months, including a new owner and an increase in proposed output from 90 to 130 megawatts.
Last week, Assemblyman Fred Thiele pulled his support for Deepwater, joining a coalition of commercial fishermen, Montauk and Wainscott residents, and others who think the proposed wind farm is a Trojan horse. “Fred’s comments are very significant,” Bragman said. “I intend to talk to him about it. It won’t lower the carbon footprint . . . this massive infrastructure in this tiny hamlet is unsettling.”
HOUNSFIELD — Discussions pertaining to a cable that will transfer electricity from the controversial Galloo Island Wind project to the electric grid drew fewer arguments and more inquiries from residents Tuesday.
“Deepwater is looking for us to memorialize a lease agreement, but we don’t think we have enough details about what that entails to do that yet,” Mr. Bock said. “The town did road easements with them, and there’s probably a template for that, but we don’t have anything like that for landing a cable at a public beach. What if the cable becomes exposed? What about the concerns of EMFs and fish migrations? Those are major concerns for us. I and some other Trustees think we can probably deal with some of that within the lease.”
The East Hampton Town Board last week pledged to grant Deepwater Wind an easement to lay power cables beneath town roads between Wainscott and a power substation off Buell Lane near East Hampton Village.
Representatives of five transmission projects proposed in July in response to the Massachusetts solicitation for 9.45 TWh/year of hydro and Class I renewables (wind, solar or energy storage) tried to explain why their projects should be among those selected in January. Contracts awarded under the MA 83D request for proposals are to be submitted in late April.
Simply put, most wind and hydroelectric power is produced in Northern and Western New York, where the supply of electricity exceeds demand. But two-thirds of all the state's power is used in the New York City-Long Island region. Transmission lines between the two areas are already overburdened, and are not equipped to handle the anticipated growth in Upstate renewables, the report says.
NYISO last week forwarded to New York regulators 12 proposals for transmission projects to help the state meet its public policy objectives (16-E-0558).
Richard Kauffman, Gov. Andrew Cuomo's energy czar, fired back at the New York Independent System Operator Wednesday after the state grid manager publicly criticized the state's Clean Energy Standard in a recent filing reported by POLITICO New York. ...Gavin Donohue, president of the Independent Power Producers of New York, which represents power plant owners, says the state should listen to the NYISO's concerns because the NYISO knows better than anyone what potential impact Cuomo's plan could have on the grid.
Invenergy is developing the Bull Run Wind Energy Center in Clinton County, pending approval from state regulators. The proposed development would have as many as 140 turbines, with an in-service date projected for 2019. ...“We think the Vermont Green project is well timed to provide the region with a reliable, clean energy source of hydro firming wind,” Sanderson said.