Ohio Power Siting Board says YES to BigWind’s ‘Top Secret’ information (again)

The Ohio Power Siting Board approved a request in the Buckeye Wind case from turbine maker Gamesa to extend the protective order which keeps noise and safety information secret.  In 2013 Gamesa was granted a protective order for 18 months,  On June 1, 2015, the OPSB granted an additional 24months of secrecy until June 1, 2017.    But on May 30thGamesa filed for yet another 24 months of protection from public view.  This request was  granted with the OPSB Order stating:

 

{¶ 12} Ohio Adm.Code 4906-7-07(H)(6) requires a party wishing to extend a protective order beyond 24 months to file an appropriate motion in advance of the expiration date, including a detailed discussion of the need for continued protection from disclosure. If Gamesa wishes to extend this confidential treatment, it should file an appropriate motion at least 45 days in advance of the expiration date. If no such motion to extend confidential treatment is filed, the Board may release this information without prior notice to Gamesa.

 

So mark your calendar for June 2019 to see if the Gamesa noise information is made public.  But in the meantime, Google Gamesa and noise complaints.  Maybe there is a reason they do not want us to see their manual….

New wind farms with a capacity of 5 or more megawatts must obtain a siting certificate through the Ohio Power Siting Board. This unique siting process is made possible in Ohio because all seven entities involved with approving the siting application are seated at the same table: the chair of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, the directors of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, the Ohio Development Services Agency, the Ohio Departments of Agriculture, Health, and Natural Resources, and a public member….

 

Source: Wind and other Renewable Energy – OPSB

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BigWind amassing army to fight in Ohio

We will likely know next Tuesday whether the Senate includes a revision to wind turbine setbacks in the budget bill.  We have heard that the wind folks continue to lobby hard and push the economic development argument, particularly the need to have renewable power available in order to attract Facebook, Amazon, and other intensive users of power.  Shockingly, the Columbus Dispatch today publishes an Editorial saying setback revisions belong in a stand-alone bill not in the Budget Bill.   Notwithstanding, the Dispatch reports nothing about our testimony nor do they acknowledge that inadequately sited turbines have consequences on people and communities.   Instead, they speak arrogantly and contemptuously of the justifications for protective siting.  The wind lobby has done such a good job convincing the press of the merit of their argument, they believe the legislation deserves an independent consideration.  Surely it would  pass easily!   

The message from the Dispatch is that the setback revision should not be in the budget but it should come back as stand-alone legislation.  The Dispatch thinks Hite’s “compromise” of adding 50 feet to property line setbacks might be the answer.   The wind lobby would bring an army with them – including the Ohio Chamber and maybe some County Commissioners.   Because the window for federal subsidies is closing and because more and more jurisdictions are finding out that wind-recommended setbacks must be lengthened, the wind lobby will press hard for fast action.   At least the Dispatch closes with noting that “both sides have strong arguments.”  We will likely have an opportunity to voice them….again….As Charlie Brown would say, “Good grief!”….

In 2014, Ohio lawmakers slipped into an unrelated bill a major change that restricted the development of wind farms in Ohio, a shift that had the potential to impact rural schools’ tax revenues, the state’s economic competitiveness, public safety and quality of life, and the environment.

Wind-energy advocates say this change — by requiring larger setbacks from property lines for the tall wind turbines — effectively zoned out new wind projects in Ohio, leaving us in the dust as neighboring states friendlier to this green-energy technology sited wind farms. They note high-tech companies such as Amazon are looking to locate where the power is greener. They say the restrictive setbacks are a setback for the state’s job and technology prospects….

Yet another BigWind setback that makes Ohio look weak

Yet, again, proof that Ohio Senators are being hoodwinked this week in Columbus.  As BigWind lobbies to reduce our 1,125 ft setback, here is another example of how weak our setback actually is.  Will our Senators see through the b.s. and side with the citizens or will they be snowed by the $$$ and lobbying power of BigWind? Time will tell….

After a 45-minute discussion and some criticism of the way the issue was handled, voters at Wednesday’s Bethel Town Meeting approved a restrictive commercial wind ordinance…. Bethel town officials highlighted three key areas: setbacks from adjacent properties, decibel levels, and height of towers.
The Bethel ordinance stipulates that a minimum setback of 2 miles be required from the outer edge of each tower to the closest point on any property line of any nonparticipating parcel, and 3,000 feet from any scenic or special resource or site in the National Register of Historic Places….

Source: Bethel passes restrictive wind ordinance | The Bethel Citizen

BigWind bullies Ohio community

How ILLogical is it for a community to pay 14 cents per kWh for electricity, when they can purchase it for 10? This is the dilemma of the city of Conneaut, Ohio.  You will read that the turbine has $250,000 worth of repairs and NexGen will happily repair it IF the city renews a 10 year purchase contract with them….for more expensive energy than they can purchase from the grid.  Once again, another turbine is plagued with expensive repairs. Don’t they pay this electric bill with tax dollars?….

The owner of a damaged wind turbine that provides some of the electricity used at Conneaut’s sewage treatment plant wants a reworked contract with the city in order to make repairs financially feasible.

City Manager James Hockaday told City Council members at Monday night’s work session that NexGen is seeking a 10-year extension to the existing 10-year contract that will expire in 2020. The company says it needs a new contract to make repairs to the 400-kilowatt turbine — which has been idle since a lightning strike at the end of February.

Lighting blasted away one of the turbine’s blades and essentially destroyed its generator, Hockaday said. NexGen has said it will cost $250,000 to fix the machine, erected in January 2010.

 To justify the expense, NexGen has submitted a contract proposal that would stretch the contract, set to expire in three years, through 2030. NexGen’s initial proposal calls for slight kilowatt-per-hour increases each of the contract years, officials have said.

The turbine supplies about 20 percent of the electricity used at the plant located along the Lake Erie shore.

In 2016, the city paid NexGen almost $59,000, according to information from the city finance office. In February, NexGen charged the city $11,135 for its services.

The city is not paying NexGen while the turbine is inoperable, Hockaday said.

Last year, the city paid NexGen a combined generation/distribution charge of 12 cents per kilowatt hour. In 2017, the seventh year of the 10-year original contract, the city is paying 12.5 cents per kWh, according to the finance office. NexGen’s combined charge will climb to 12.9 cents per kWh next year, topping out at 14 cents in 2020, per the contract.

Direct Energy has been the primary power supplier to the sewage plant, and is filling the void left by the turbine, officials said. Direct Energy this year is charging a combined 10 cents per kWh, Finance Director John Williams said at Monday’s meeting.

Hockaday told council the city has multiple options regarding the turbine, such as explore pricing available through conventional utilities, talk with other turbine operators or negotiate with NexGen.

“We can counter-offer (NexGen),” he said. “(The contract) is a proposal.”

Hockaday said he feels the turbine has merit…

Source: Conneaut will examine options regarding damaged turbine | Local News | starbeacon.com

$6.9M for 2 turbines that ‘might’ save energy….Hmmmm

I don’t know about you, but if I were an investor or purchaser of products from Valfilm, in Findlay, Ohio, I might question the longevity of their company after this investment. 2 turbines = $6.9MILLION and the potential for energy cost savings? What is most unfortunate, is that Valfilm is unaware of the realities that we share here, on a regular basis.  Additionally, the Ball/Whirlpool turbines are still new, but as they near 12 years, the O & M costs will outweigh their useful life.  This is the reality that we may or may not read about someday in a paper.  Honda was a perfect example of this reality and their turbines croaked long before the 12 year mark…..

A Findlay wind energy company will build two wind turbines, totaling $6.9 million, to help power Valfilm’s headquarters on Findlay’s north end….

The 405-foot tall wind turbines will be built by One Energy, which built the five wind turbines of the same height serving Whirlpool Corp. and Ball Metal. Construction of the Valfilm wind turbines will start this fall on 35 acres east of the plant…
By early 2018, the two 1.5 megawatt wind turbines will supply over 75 percent of Valfilm’s power needs. The other 25 percent will continue to come from American Electric Power.
Valfilm will buy the wind turbines’ output at a fixed electrical rate over the next 20 years, said Steve Shiparski, Valfilm’s Findlay plant manager.
He was cautiously optimistic that Valfilm would save energy costs in the arrangement…

Source: The Courier » Valfilm plans wind turbines

BigWind ‘autopsy’ will educate students alright

I suppose autopsies can, theoretically, be useful in fields other than medicine.  Take for instance, the broken turbine story below.  More often than not, it does appear as though turbines don’t operate well for schools.  They often need expensive repairs, repairs that the schools cannot afford, and rarely produce the energy they promise- no surprise. Anyway, this story involves a new strategy.  Maybe if students start studying the autopsies of BigWind deaths- an epidemic in America- they will become educated about the waste of taxpayer dollars given to this failing industry. An industry that produces intermittent, expensive energy that must always be backed up with fossil fuels…..

The blades and other components were removed this week from the two 30-foot-tall, 100-kilowatt wind turbines on the campus of Lake Land College as part of a remediation project for these damaged, malfunctioning turbines.

However, the south turbine tower and its nacelle equipment housing have been left standing for ongoing educational use by students in the Renewable Energy Program at Lake Land. A set of turbine blades and the north turbine’s nacelle will be left at ground left for student use, as well.

The two 100-kilowatt wind turbines were installed near the West Building in 2012. Vice President for Business Services Bryan Gleckler said the north turbine was funded by a federal grant and the south one was funded by a state grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity….

 “They never really operated at the level we hoped,” Gleckler said of the performance of the two wind turbines.

Source: Wind turbine blades removed | Local | jg-tc.com

BigWind FIRE…Will Ohio Senators support us or them?

Senator Cliff Hite has introduced an amendment in the Ohio budget, which will allow BigWind to plant an industrial wind energy turbine very close to the home of Ohioans.  By looking at this picture (and the others at the source website), does ANYONE think this is a good idea? If you do, you need your brain examined. Senator Hite has been brainwashed by BigWind lobbyists.  Maybe it’s time for Senator Hite to take a hike!….

A wind turbine caught fire Wednesday afternoon in the Texas panhandle, but officials are still working to determine what caused it….

Source: Wind turbine catches fire in Texas panhandle – KTXS