Articles from Vermont
Green Mountain Power suffered “several millions” of dollars of lost revenue over the past 18 months because northern Vermont’s electrical grid isn’t robust enough, the company’s director of power planning said Thursday.
Swanton Wind’s developers are not getting the project’s $100,000 Public Utility Commission (PUC) filing fee back, nor are participants in the PUC’s review process getting their legal expenditures returned. But if Swanton Wind’s developers file a new application in the future, those participants may again argue they’re eligible for compensation.
READSBORO — The controversial Deerfield Wind project that took over 10 years and $7.5 million to complete is now generating power, but regional data shows that renewables are not producing as much energy in these cold winter months as some might have hoped.
“This is a sad day for many Vermonters and people who care about wildlife and value the importance of wilderness,” said Annette Smith, executive director of Vermonters for a Clean Environment, which mounted a court challenge over impacts on the nearby George D. Aiken Wilderness Area. Smith and other opponents of commercial-size wind projects also protested the Deerfield Wind groundbreaking ceremony in September 2016.
“When it comes to energy development in Vermont, the industrial wind industry leads the “old way” pack. Wind operators and developers have been living off federal subsidies since the early 1990s and have been wreaking havoc in Vermont for just as long. It’s time to boot them out of the state…”
The operator of several wind turbines near Georgia received a $7,500 fine for operating the turbines in 2016 during weather that could have led ice to form on the turbines’ blades. The turbines’ owner won’t contest the fine, a representative said.
The draft plan ...takes a hard stance on big wind. "Beyond the utility-scale wind project currently under development in Readsboro and Searsburg, as a matter of policy, utility-scale wind is deemed incompatible with the land-use policies contained within the regional plan," the document says. "Instead, we would encourage the development of solar energy generation that is compatible with our regional plan land-use policies."
Backers of a planned seven-turbine wind energy project in Swanton said this week they’re withdrawing their application for a state permit. A combination of factors led to the decision, said Nick Charyk, a spokesman for the Swanton Wind project, who characterized this as “a pause, not a halt.”
The Belisle family has shelved plans for a proposed wind project in Swanton, citing tax and regulatory risks, a spokesman said.
BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - How loud wind turbines can run has been whipping up debate for years.
“Many people believe that if Irasburg opposes industrial wind development on the Kidder Hill ridgeline, the developer could simply move the towers a few feet to the Lowell side of the town line,” Warner said. “However, the towers would have to move nearly a mile away from Irasburg before our town would lose its participation in the siting decision. The Legislature included that provision in Act 174 precisely for situations like this.”
“The wind noise rule as… approved is not going to protect Vermonters from the harm that we have already experienced from industrial wind turbines,” said Annette Smith, head of the group Vermonters for a Clean Environment and a longtime critic of industrial wind projects. “It is a step in the right direction.”
“All I have asked for is for them to do the repairs,” Francis Candiloro said Saturday, referring to chimney, window and other damage he attributes to blasting between October 2016 and May. He said representatives for the developer, Avangrid Renewables, told him the damage was unrelated to the work.
The Public Utility Commission has opened an investigation into blasting that was conducted at the Deerfield Wind project.
MONTPELIER — The Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules accepted sound standards crafted by the Public Utilities Commission for wind turbines by a 5-2 vote. This rule-making initiative is a requirement of 2016’s Act 174 energy siting policy.
In approving stricter sound limits for ridgeline wind turbines Thursday afternoon, the Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules has managed to upset both sides on the wind energy debate. The proposed sound standards have been in the works for more than a year, and they long ago set off a war of words between the various factions in the wind energy debate.
A group opposing wind turbines in Vermont has taken what its organizers say is an unprecedented step by filing a public records request with several legislators who are reviewing new sound limits for future wind-energy projects. Two of the legislators have already turned over all the requested documents. Six have not.
The rule proposed by the Public Utility Commission sets a 42-decibel limit for wind turbines during the day, when measured 100 feet from the outside of neighboring homes, and a 39-decibel limit at night. The Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules chose to extend the deadline for a vote on the rule.
The committee is reviewing a proposal drafted by the Public Utility Commission, which regulates energy projects in Vermont. PUC Commissioner Margaret Cheney and staff members defended the proposed noise standards before lawmakers at the Statehouse. They said they strike a balance between desirable wind energy and the health of Vermonters who would be subject to the low-middle frequency sounds emanating from machines nearly 500-feet tall.
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.