Articles filed under Impact on Landscape from USA

An ill wind is blowing turbine issue in our state

The governor has declared a goal of 2,000 megawatts (MW) of wind power in Massachusetts by the year 2020, and his staff has commissioned a study showing that over half could be located in the Berkshires. ...It's hard to imagine so many 40-story structures on our mountains, but the state has already mapped them, identifying more than 50 places with enough acreage and estimated wind resources to support from five to 53 industrial wind turbines.
3 Jul 2009

Wind power also brings tower problems

To reach the ultimate goal of wind producing 20 percent of the energy used in this country by 2030, tens of thousands of 200-foot-high turbines must be installed nationwide, with many of them slated for gusty public lands in Wyoming, Washington, Oregon and Idaho. That's sparked a fight that looks much like the one waged about natural gas in the past couple of decades. Only this time the battle lines are drawn in unexpected places.
29 Jun 2009

Plan to ban wind turbines in the Blues has merit

Tonight the Umatilla County Planning Commission meets to discuss whether to adopt an amendment to the county's comprehensive plan that would ban giant wind turbines. ...The Blue Mountains are a resource shared by folks who live in Southeastern Washington and Northeastern Oregon. Anything that changes that resource is cause for concern, which is why we believe the "No Turbine Zone" amendment is worth considering.
25 Jun 2009

Bus trip to NH wind farm

Officials from Vermont Community Wind have organized a bus trip to a wind farm in New Hampshire to try and build support for a large scale wind farm they're proposing in and around the Rutland County town of Ira. Company officials say about 35 residents from the area will travel to Lempster, New Hampshire, on Saturday where a 24-megawatt wind farm has recently been built.
24 Jun 2009

Bus trip to NH wind farm

Officials from Vermont Community Wind have organized a bus trip to a wind farm in New Hampshire to try and build support for a large scale wind farm they're proposing in and around the Rutland County town of Ira. Company officials say about 35 residents from the area will travel to Lempster, New Hampshire, on Saturday where a 24-megawatt wind farm has recently been built.
24 Jun 2009

Proposed wind farm intrusion to hikers?

A National Park Service official says a wind project proposed for a Skamania County site just outside the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area would intrude on the experiences of people traveling two national historic trails. Both the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail and the Oregon Pioneer Historic Trail pass through the Gorge, and both also pass within five miles of where turbines would rise at the Whistling Ridge Wind Project, said Rory D. Westberg, the Park Service's deputy regional director for planning and resource management.
23 Jun 2009

Turbine bill steamrolls towns

Hundreds of industrial wind turbines could be built in the Berkshires under a bill being fast-tracked through the state legislature. The Wind Energy Siting Reform Act establishes an unprecedented process for opening public and private land in the Berkshires to industrial wind development. It allows the state's Energy Facilities Siting Board -- which has never rejected a power plant application -- to override decisions by local zoning boards about the permitting of wind facilities.
22 Jun 2009

Slow down the rush of siting wind turbines in our Blue Mountains

Successive generations of children growing up in Eastern Oregon may never know we were once surrounded by an expansive and majestic landscape devoid of wind turbines. Already the foothills that display a beauty all their own are becoming something of an anomaly. Wind turbines - and the necessity of high-voltage power lines to access the energy they produce - are the most recent threat to our Blue Mountains.
21 Jun 2009

Ranch's windmill shows resistance such projects face

McEvoy Ranch spent nearly three years winning county approvals and installing a windmill that should generate enough power to run the olive ranch off Petaluma-Point Reyes Road. To win approval from the county Planning Commission, the McEvoys had to move the windmill away from the road and reduce its height by more than half to minimize its visual impact.
21 Jun 2009

Big power line controversy; Underneath the way it's been handled lies question: Is it needed?

Size and cost alone make this project controversial, but it has become even hotter because, so far, it has been handled so poorly by the people who want to build it, the Transmission Agency of Northern California. TANC is a joint powers agency comprised of 15 publicly owned utilities, including the MID and TID. The agency's commission is chaired by MID's general manager, Allen Short. Not surprisingly, landowners all the way from Lassen and Shasta to Stanislaus and Tuolumne counties are upset -- and angry.
21 Jun 2009

Ranch joins power line opposition

Xcel Energy and the Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association have filed with the commission for a certificate of public convenience and necessity for the lines, which the companies say will increase the reliability of the grid in the valley and increase their ability to export electricity generated from wind and solar farms in Southern Colorado. ...An administrative law judge will hold a pre-hearing conference Friday in Denver to consider the intervention requests. The utilities commission has until Jan. 26 to decide on the applications by Xcel and Tri-State.
21 Jun 2009

Water woes, wind turbines threatening Horicon refuge, report says

Nearby wind turbines, declining water quality and decreasing water levels at Horicon National Wildlife Refuge in southeastern Wisconsin earned the popular birders' destination the dubious distinction of being ranked the third most imperiled refuge in the nation, according to a list compiled by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility. ...The uncertain impact of the wind turbines prompted another organization, the National Wildlife Refuge Association, to name Horicon one of the nation's most endangered refuges in a list released four years ago.
21 Jun 2009

Old problems for new energy

Western governors, animated by President Obama's goal of doubling renewable energy production in the U.S. within three years, have identified dozens of areas rich in "new energy" sources. However, they're now facing some of the same "old energy" obstacles to getting the projects moving. Their challenge risks creating a contradiction in which building environmentally friendly new-energy plants tramples sensitive natural areas.
19 Jun 2009

Opponents launch petition drive to overturn changes

People opposing Record Hill Wind LLC's proposal to site 22 wind-power turbines in town have launched a petition drive to rescind approved ordinance changes allowing such facilities. The petition asks selectmen to call a special town meeting to amend the comprehensive plan by deleting all language and sections referring to wind power that were added by a majority vote at a special town meeting Jan. 15.
18 Jun 2009

Oncor's power line project under fire

Several Maxdale and Ding Dong residents are opposing a proposed power line project for aesthetic and financial reasons. "I live in the country; nobody out here wants this," said Sherry Fisher, a landowner with 450 acres of pristine ranch land that may be disturbed by the new towers. Two weeks ago, Oncor sent newsletters to landowners whose land could be crossed by towers.
17 Jun 2009

More studies of wind farm requested

Comments on the proposed Galloo Island Wind Farm submitted to the state Department of Environmental Conservation criticize the project's effects on birds and animals and ask for public access. DEC collected 22 written comments on the draft environmental impact statement submitted by Galloo Island developer Upstate NY Power Corp. Oral comments were taken at two public hearings May 18. As lead agency, DEC collects comments and then determines whether the draft statement is complete.
14 Jun 2009

Proximity to turbines leads to lower assessments, then higher taxes

My house and land is in Prattsburgh, across from turbine sites for the Ecogen wind project, and my wife owns adjacent property in Naples, Ontario County. I've heard some people say "what's happening in the hills with the wind turbines won't affect me." What these folks may not yet realize is that, if these turbines are allowed to damage the value of adjacent properties, their taxes will go up. And the first step in this one-two process has just started.
12 Jun 2009

Commissioners hear concerns from landowners

Nine landowners concerned about OG&E putting transmission lines in bar ditches along their land voiced complaints to the Woodward County Commission Monday, saying the county needed to hold the energy company accountable. ...According to another land owner, concrete bases 20 feet deep are being constructed to hold the poles for the transmission lines. Klick said, "These poles are 80 feet tall. They have a detrimental value to everybody's land."
9 Jun 2009
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