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Maine fishing interests seek total ban on offshore wind energy

More than 60 commercial fishermen and their supporters testified Tuesday in favor of a bill that would block any attempt to develop offshore wind projects anywhere along the Maine coast. The bill would prohibit any state agency from permitting or approving any offshore wind energy project regardless of its location. It was introduced by Rep. Billy Bob Faulkingham, R-Winter Harbor, a commercial fisherman, and co-sponsored by eight other Republican lawmakers.
5 May 2021

Saunders County planners vote against proposed solar farm

OPPD’s hoped-for solar farm near Yutan is headed to the Saunders County Board with a strike against it. On Monday evening, after two hours of public testimony, the Saunders County Planning Commission voted 5-1 against a conditional-use permit for the project. Commissioner Jake Mayer was the sole supportive vote. The County Board, which isn’t bound by the Planning Commission’s vote, is scheduled to take up the issue May 11.
5 May 2021

Locals worry wind and solar will gobble up forests and farms

Some state regulators have begun rethinking their wind and solar strategies to push projects away from undeveloped areas. But they acknowledge more conflicts are inevitable as the industry grows, and many states still lack a clear picture of the land use that will be required to meet their renewable energy goals. In Massachusetts, 150,000 acres could be lost to renewable energy development as the state seeks to meet its climate targets, according to a 2020 report from Mass Audubon, a conservation nonprofit. Between 2012 and 2017, the group found that solar projects accounted for a quarter of the natural lands that were converted to development. In response to those concerns, Massachusetts leaders are seeking to reduce state incentives for building solar projects on ecologically sensitive lands.
4 May 2021

Power cable proposal connecting offshore wind runs afoul of Long Island fishermen

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.
4 May 2021

Offshore wind too ugly for the Hamptons but OK for other beach resorts?

In official comments to the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) submitted July 30, 2018, New York suggested the wind turbines be no closer than 20 miles from shore. This recommendation was based upon an earlier study by BOEM that concluded that 600-foot-high turbines produced a “dominate impact “on the beach view 15 miles offshore. Adjusting for the new 50% taller turbines, the suggested distance from the shore should be 30 miles. In Europe, the closest lease area for these jumbo turbines is 44 miles out. The New York decision begs the question of why lease areas from Maryland to Massachusetts aren’t being rejected on the same merits. 
4 May 2021

Long Island, downstate must pay for bulk of $1.5B wind-farm upgrades, state says

LIPA argues that ratepayers statewide will benefit from the grid upgrades on Long Island and in New York City, so the costs should be shared equally across the state. But the state Public Service Commission says the lion's share of the cost should be borne by ratepayers in the "energy-congested" regions such as Long Island and New York City that are receiving the upgrade and who it says will benefit more from higher-capacity power lines and other enhancements.
3 May 2021

Winds of change blow through blade market

In November 2019, the Financial Times warned the 2020 wind farm programme could be compromised by balsa shortages precipitated by a poor growing season. Balsa prices had already doubled by the time the story warned of shortages. ...last August, a shipment of illegally harvested balsa destined for China was seized by Peruvian authorities in the port of Callao, Lima. About a week later, another shipment was intercepted at a highway control post in Churubamba, Huanuco. ...Wood Mackenzie analysts are forecasting a global turbine supply chain worth $600 billion (£432bn) this decade. “In the short term, it seems very possible that at least some of our clean energy will be powered by illegally harvested timber,” warns Timbercheck.
3 May 2021

Dan's Mountain wind project remains on hold

A local couple have remained busy in their effort to derail a plan to construct wind turbines on Dan’s Mountain. Harwood subdivision residents Darlene and William Park, with the support of numerous neighbors, have been engaged in a legal battle against Dan’s Mountain Wind Force LLC. Their efforts have led to the project being stalled as they battle it in two courts.
30 Apr 2021

Ørsted says offshore UK windfarms need urgent repairs

The Danish wind power firm Ørsted has warned that up to 10 of its giant offshore windfarms around the UK and Europe will need urgent repairs because their subsea cables have been eroded by rocks on the seabed. ...Ørsted has found that the rocks placed at the base of the wind turbine foundations to prevent the erosion of the seabed were responsible for wearing down the cable protection system which, in a worst case scenario, could cause the cables to fail.
30 Apr 2021

Ørsted points to possible reason for EUR 403 million cable problem

Leading offshore wind developer Ørsted has suggested that a scour protection method which left the inter-array cables unstabilised could be the potential reason for an up to DKK 3 billion (EUR 403 million) issue across up to ten wind farms in Europe. As reported earlier, Ørsted first became aware of the problem earlier this year during an inspection after an outage at the Race Bank wind farm offshore the UK.
30 Apr 2021

‘Ignored’ communities call for pause to wind farms

In a joint letter to Scottish Government ministers with responsibility for transport, electricity transmission, rural economy and tourism, South Knapdale and Tarbert and Skipness community councils joined forces with their five Kintyre equivalents to express concern at the pace and size of wind farm developments on valuable landscapes. They also claim some windfarm developers have recently ignored Scottish Government advice on providing community benefits – cash for local organisations – and shared community ownership.
30 Apr 2021

Cable failures hit offshore wind farms

The company identified a total of 10 projects in the U.K. and Europe that used the same design that may need to be remedied. Some projects will be easy to fix. The company can just dump more rocks on top of the cables to make them stay in place. ...But in other cases, Orsted will have to repair or replace the cables. That’s the pricey option that will make up the bulk of the cost, Wiinholt said.
29 Apr 2021

Damaged offshore wind cables to cost Orsted almost half a billion dollars: CFO

“To a large extent we will be able to mitigate it through stabilising the cable protection system. It will be done by dumping rocks on top of the rocks that are already there.” At other wind farms, the cables are so damaged that the company will either need to repair or replace them, which is more expensive than dumping more rocks on top of the existing protection layer.
29 Apr 2021

The U.S. vs. Atlantic fisheries

The Atlantic coast contains some of the most productive fisheries in the world. BOEM is supposed to work with fisheries interests to ensure offshore wind development does not adversely affect habitat and the livelihood of fishermen. In fact, in December of last year, the Department of the Interior issued a detailed memo stating that the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act prohibits offshore wind approvals if a project would interfere with fishing. But just a few weeks ago, the administration reversed those findings.
28 Apr 2021

ArcVera Renewables: Billions Lost in Texas Winter Weather Event

The study analyzes the outage periods documented by ERCOT for 191 wind farm units, with a nominal capacity of 21,888 MW, of which 57% (12,495 MW) is subject to a hedged financial structure. Lost energy production from wind farms, aggregating individual wind farm results, was 629,700 MWh with a financial impact of this lost production, whether the financial loss to the owner or gain by others, estimated at $4.18 billion. This represents an average financial impact on any project of $44.4 million. For hedged projects, the financial impact of this lost proxy production is even greater, with an average financial impact of $45.4 million.
28 Apr 2021

Peaceful protesters air concerns over wind farms

During the protest, Cape May County Commissioner Director Gerald Thornton came out to speak to the attendees. He told them that he was opposed to the wind farm and that he, along with his fellow Commissioners who stood outside with him, would approve a resolution at Tuesday’s meeting opposing wind farms. The resolution was unanimously approved.
28 Apr 2021

https://www.windaction.org/posts?type=Article
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