As our governor forces BigWind on Ohioans, will his decision actually help our residents and businesses? BigWind will fight hard to reduce their setbacks and place more machines, closer to us. Read below for multiple references related to this issue…
An article from Energy Central explains that most Americans woefully misunderstand energy. “Turns out that Americans are a bit overly optimistic about the role that renewable energy plays in the US. The average American believes that 20 percent of our energy use comes from renewables-11 percent from solar and 9 percent from wind. The reality is quite different. According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), solar is at 1 percent and wind is at 2 percent.” This article is important in discussing where people get information – social media is a factor.
Meanwhile, the National Renewable Energy Lab – a cheerleader for wind at any costs claims that “Under existing RPSs, the country will count on renewables for 26 percent of electricity generation by 2030 and 40 percent by 2050. Under the high-RPS scenario, renewables would reach 35 percent by 2030 and 49 percent by 2050, the report found. Satisfying existing portfolio standards will cost about $31 billion, or about 75 cents per kilowatt-hour of renewable energy in terms of levelized costs. “ NREL’s costs are widely disputed but if we look at where the country really stands and the land use cost of meeting such ambitious goals, we think there is no way Americans would consent to these RPSs (Renewable Portfolio Standards)…in Ohio, though, our governor has forced an RPS on us!
In spite of the above, “Wind and solar will provide a mere 4 percent of all the world’s energy by 2040 while conventional fossil fuels provide 80 percent, according to a new report published by energy giant ExxonMobil.” “Exxon’s 2040 projections are roughly similar to the current U.S. numbers, which got 33 percent of its power from natural gas in 2015, another 33 percent from coal, 20 percent from nuclear, and a mere 5.3 percent from wind and solar combined, according to the governmental Energy Information Administration (EIA).”
The Irish High Court has found in favor of seven families from the Cork area impacted by low frequency noise from turbines as far as 3,280 feet from their homes – some of which had been abandoned. “The defendant, Enercon Wind Farm Services Ireland Ltd., has admitted liability and the case is listed for ten days in the High Court commencing 25th April 2017 to deal with damages and costs. The outcome of the April court case could be a watershed for existing and planned wind farms as well as for investor confidence in, and government plans for the future of on-shore wind in Ireland. Many families, similarly affected by noisy wind turbines are anxiously awaiting the outcome and it is expected that more cases will now follow.” It is believed (hoped!) the case could affect turbine siting worldwide.
The Springfield newspaper reports about the current environment now that the mandates have returned. “Even with the mandates back in place, both sides in the wind debate also said the real fight in that industry is over setbacks from homes and property lines.” We appreciated Rep. Seitz comment that “When a capitalist makes a product that consumers won’t buy, he improves the price and/or quality of the product in order to get sales,” Seitz said in an email to the Springfield News-Sun. “When a socialist makes a product that consumers won’t buy, he gets the government to mandate that people must buy it. It’s that simple. Because I am a capitalist, I do not favor mandates.” Hat’s off to Terry Rittenhouse for his articulate response to the paper, “In Champaign County though, Rittenhouse argued the tougher standards are necessary to protect residents who live near possible wind farms. He argued there has been enough local opposition that moving forward after a roughly decade-long fight would amount to a hostile takeover.
The Congress ended its term with bills pending in both the House and Senate to protect military property from wind turbine encroachment. “The Protection of Military Airfields from Wind Turbine Encroachment Act would, if signed into law, incorporate revisions to the Internal Revenue Code that will prevent wind energy developers from pursuing renewable electricity production credit and energy credits, both of which provide tax relief, for projects within tens of miles from military airfields. “ Sen. Cornyn (R-Texas) would make any wind development within 30 miles of a military airfield ineligible while a bill introduced by Rep. Chris Collins from the Buffalo, New York area would extend the distance to 40 miles. These bills will return in the new Congress. Current law requires that wind developers get clearance from the Defense Siting Clearinghouse. It is widely believed that the DOD Siting Clearinghouse has been under orders from the Obama Administration not to impede wind. We understand that the first director of the Defense Siting Clearinghouse went on to Apex as Vice President for Federal Business. If such legislation were to pass anytime soon, EverPower’s Buckeye Wind development could be impacted as long as the FAA has not given clearance for the project. A Google Earth review reflects that the southern border of Champaign County is about 16 miles from Wright Patterson AFB and the proposed wind project is about 28 miles from the base. The first application made by EverPower to the FAA expired long ago. A new application was filed in August, 2016 and its status remains “pending”.
In response to the reinstated mandate requirement that requires 12.5 of electricity distributed by Ohio utilities to be derived from renewable sources, American Electric Power says it “plans to develop 900 megawatts of wind and solar energy in Ohio over the next five years and that it does not expect any problem meeting the renewable energy mandates.” On the other hand, First Energy plans to purchase Renewable Energy Credits and they do not feel they need to source them in Ohio. The in-state requirement for renewable energy was eliminated several years ago as being unconstitutional. Nevertheless, it appears the state’s development folks want to encourage in-state development by catering to companies like Amazon. It was disturbing to read that “Matt Englehart, spokesman for JobsOhio, the state’s privatized economic development arm, said some companies, including Amazon Web Services, want access to reliable renewable energy. Amazon has contracted to buy wind energy from developers in the state.” Reliable renewable energy? Laughable. This statement tells us JobsOhio is not working to benefit Ohio’s rural communities nor to encourage the lowest cost electrical power for Ohio manufacturers.
Do not miss the commentary by Robert Bryce who writes, “For decades, a central tenet of environmentalism has been small footprints in everything from agriculture to urban planning. But now, in the name of climate change, environmentalism has been turned on its head. Rather than advocate for people, landscapes and wildlife, our biggest environmental groups are cheering for renewable energy schemes that disregard all three. In short, keeping it “in the ground” requires decimating much of what’s above ground. That’s a lousy trade.” Bryce explains his methodology for measuring the land use implications of wind by determining wind energy density capacity. “The result: wind energy’s footprint is 3 watts per square meter, or 1 gigawatt per 131.3 square miles.”. Solar’s footprint is 36.3 watts per square meter or 1 gigawatt per 10.6 square miles.
Our favorite British critic of renewables, James Delingpole, asks “When is the rest of the Western world going to catch up with Donald Trump and point out that the green emperor is wearing no clothes? I ask as a concerned UK taxpayer absolutely sick to death of the vast sums of money that continue to be funnelled into the pockets of crooks, liars, spivs, chancers, con-artists and fantasists in the name of solving the non-existent problem of “climate change.” Delingpole writes that “I once got into trouble with Australia’s incredibly politically correct press complaints commission for quoting a sheep farmer who described wind farm developers being as bad as paedophiles. I would hereby like to apologise to paedophiles for any offence that may have been caused by this disgusting analogy.”…
Alternative energy advocates cheered a recent decision by Ohio Gov. John Kasich to veto a recent bill that would have weakened the state’s clean energy standards, arguing the move will lead to more investment and jobs in the industry statewide.
But opponents, including residents engaged in a long legal battle over a proposed Champaign County wind farm, said they have seen laws repeatedly shift on the issue and hope to continue the fight…