Ohio testifies against (HB 114) BigWind in a BigWay

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Yesterday was a huuuuggge day at the Statehouse where rural landowners from
Champaign, Van Wert, Seneca, Huron, Richland, Allen, Hardin and Logan
Counties assembled to provide opponent testimony against the proposed
setbacks in Sub. H.B.  114.   Fifty-three separate testimonies were
submitted for the record and twenty of them were presented verbally by a
great group of people including a Van Wert County Commissioner. All
testimony can be downloaded or viewed on the Senate Energy and Natural
Resources Committee website at
http://www.ohiosenate.gov/committees/energy-and-natural-resources/document-a
rchive .   The room was packed and those who made the long trip to Columbus
left quite an impression on anyone who saw us fill the main floor and the
balcony. We spent 3 1/2 hours stating our concerns and Chairman Balderson was kind enough to let everyone say what they came to say without time constraints.

We rebutted the notion that Ohio’s setbacks were the most restrictive in
the nation by showing that the universe of states to which we can be
compared is just four states.  If H.B. 114 is passed with 1.2x turbine
height setbacks, Ohio will have the third least protective setbacks in the
nation with South Dakota (46th in population rank) and Wisconsin being worse
than Ohio.  Wisconsin measures 1.1x turbine height to the property line and
1,125′ to the residence.  The Wisconsin Town Association adopted a
Resolution a few years ago calling for a Moratorium on further wind
development and the Brown County Board of Health deemed them to be a human
health hazard.

We presented a powerful testimony documenting the property losses
experienced inside the Blue Creek Wind project.   We uniformly presented
opposition to measurement from anything but the property line and opposition
to any reduction in current setbacks.  We all demanded that people inside a
project footprint have a vote in whether or not a project should be
approved.  One opponent actually lives inside Blue Creek.  She described
the awful nuisance effects and said there were times she had to leave the
area.

Senator Dolan was ready with questions we suspect were prepared for him by
the wind lobby.  He was essentially the only one speaking on behalf of wind.

*       Sen. Dolan said OPSB siting was unique in the US and makes Ohio’s
wind siting the most professional, responsive and protective in the nation.
He said no other state has what we have. But OPSB’s siting decisions
routinely wind up in the Ohio Supreme Court because they are flawed. Both
county and township governments have been intervenors and their concerns,
like the citizens,  have been disregarded.  OPSB has not adopted all the
siting rules they were required by law to adopt; they have no standard for
Low Frequency Noise; they do not enforce the law requiring property line
setbacks for amended certificates; they deny requests for safety manuals and
on and on.   One Supreme Court  Justice once opined that   “Where there is
no rule, there can be no violation, and there will be no need for an
amendment.”  That seems to us like the OPSB philosophy.

*       One point in our testimony that should be reinforced is that, in
almost every other state, the setback is established via local zoning
ordinance.  In 27 states, there are numerous issues that state Public
Utility or Public Service Commissions evaluate when processing an
application for a wind project certificate but setbacks are not one of them.
(In some instances, the developer can appeal to the state Public Utilities
Commission if they object to the local zoning.)  When other state
governments issue a certificate, they simply verify the application complies
with the local setback and that  a local zoning permit has been issued. That
is what the National Conference of State Legislatures’ survey reveals.
Moreover, it reveals that almost every local zoning ordinance measures
setbacks from the property line irrespective of differences in distance.
Even AWEA’s setback  chart confirms this.

*       Sen. Dolan continues to assert that granting PILOT constitutes local
control even after testimony that EverPower’s representative told the family
of a witness they intended to build without PILOT. Dolan
attacked the witness saying she was spreading “hearsay” that was not
credible.  Dolan tried to get Julie to agree that there was no longer a
project in Champaign County because EverPower had been denied PILOT.  She
said she did not know that to be true.    Another thing to consider is that
an increasing number of developers are building the wind facilities and
selling them – to corporations; to other wind companies and to utilities.
These developers will not have to pay the tax because they won’t own the
project anymore.  Any company with a deep pocket and desire to appear green
(think Amazon or AEP) can afford to pay.

*       Sen. Dolan continues to assert the “two-pronged” setback – from the
property line and the residence addresses our concerns.  This is absolutely
laughable but it continues to have some kind of traction with legislators.
The only thing that matters is the distance from the property line. Anything
beyond that is irrelevant. The nuisance effects cross the line onto the
property on which these people pay taxes.  Although we continue to  say it
is trespass zoning and that the participating property-owner is given an
easement and compensated while the non-participating property owner carries
the burden, risks loss of property value and becomes a prisoner inside his
own house.

*       Sen. Dolan asked a witness if she would be willing to have the County Commissioners make the decision on approving a wind farm.
She said “no”.  She said some Commissioners are leaseholders.  (They also
have a conflict of interest in accepting the discretionary money which is
part of the PILOT and which can fund their own salary increases.) She
asserted the only acceptable thing would  be a vote of the affected people
inside the footprint.  It came through pretty clearly that local voters need
a voice.  A Van Wert County Commissioner stated that, even if the
people in the affected area do not have an opportunity to vote, the
Commissioners would take a straw poll anyway and that would guide them.
He also made the important point that giving local control to the
voters forces the wind companies to negotiate.  Right now they have no
incentive to negotiate and they ignore the concerns of the local community.
Related to that, he said in Paulding County the wind developer provided
a $5,000 bond to dismantle the Timber Road project.  That exposes the county
to a future liability that they probably will never be able to afford to
address.

*       Sen. Dolan asked us to acknowledge that the 2,300′ property line
setbacks adopted in Rush County, Indiana meant that a wind project could not
be built.  We said that was the choice of that community.  Further noted, Allen County, where Fort Wayne is located, voted to ban wind turbines. Noted, too, was the manager of the Blue Creek Wind Farm chose to live in Fort Wayne where he and his family would not be exposed to wind turbines. One size does not fit all.  Why
should it matter that a wind project would need to go elsewhere where they
can be accommodated?   It should be obvious to everyone that it is wrong to
facilitate a hostile takeover of a community.

*       We understand part of the reluctance to permit local zoning comes
from the Farm Bureau who thinks regulation in a rural area is the camel’s
nose under the tent and will legitimize future rural regulation such as for
hog farms.  That issue was squarely addressed in the testimony of our witness
 who said anyone who chooses to live in the country accepts that there might be pests and unpleasant odors from animal farm operations. But NO ONE expects to live inside an industrial power plant.  The farm lobby should not get away with conflating hog farms and industrial wind despite their continuing to call them “farms”.

If HB 114 were to pass in its present form, Ohio would become the dumping
ground for developers who want to site turbines ‘on the cheap’ near
transmission, rather than in more remote locations that have higher
transmission costs but fewer people.

As all of the debate continues, we are seeing more courts upholding
challenges from people who anticipate problems with proposed wind
developments.  There is recent court-related activity from Indiana, West
Virginia, Minnesota, Kansas and New York.

As noted above, Ohio does not have a standard for low frequency noise which
is below the threshold of hearing but can harm you.  We cannot see x-rays or
ultraviolet rays yet we understand exposure to them can harm us.  LFN is
harmful even though we cannot see it.  One opponent submitted written
testimony on this issue and we also recommend a good video to watch for a
better understanding of LFN at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=194&v=ZXCZ3OyklrE .

Thank you to all who traveled and submitted testimony! veryone should feel proud to Every single person mattered —democracy in action!!

Love of $ is the root of all evil (BigWind)

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It seems more and more that the pursuit of money is the only justification left for building wind facilities.  In today’s issue, the article “Love of Money is the Root of All Evil” is included.  Maybe it will resonate with your experience or maybe you might like it share it with your elected officials.

A quote from the article states:  “This general affluence, however, brings neither an increase in human decency nor real happiness.  Instead, the more gadgetry we have, the more choices we have in the marketplace, the more economic security we have – if we have defined those as the center of our lives – the more desperately wretched we become inside.  Moreover, no one who makes money the center of his life is ever satisfied with what he has.  The lust for wealth is a narcotic just as insidious as heroin or pornography.  It consumes us.  We barter away everything that ought to matter in our lives and silently mock those things that truly matter, and we encourage the rest of us to mock those things as well.

 A letter to the Editor from a resident of Tipton County, Indiana amplifies the above quote.  Jane Harper writes, “Wind companies prey on counties with weak ordinances. Think about why they chose you. It’s nothing more than a business deal to them in order to make money and they care not about the chronic wounds of strife left behind. To most, the price of happiness and serenity and community cohesiveness is price-less, and no amount of money flashed in front of county leaders from a wind company “for the good of the county” will make a measurable positive difference in one’s daily lives.  So the “numbers” of what “wind” brings to the community are immaterial if you all believe that happiness does not have a price tag.”

 Do county commissioners, township trustees and school board officials understand that to most of their constituents, the justification of money coming into the community will not really make a “measurable positive difference in one’s daily life”  because the happiness of their constituents does not have a price tag?

Elsewhere in the news:

 

  • The Van Wert School Board writes an open letter to the community to justify why they are willing to barter away serenity and community cohesiveness in exchange for money saying, “Wind revenue is important to VWCS because it would allow the district to continue to meet prudent student and facility needs for a longer period, without going to the voters.”   How arrogant. What a lousy bargain.

 

  • The Sandusky Register reports on the annual bird migration across Lake Erie. “ In recent news, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology introduced a real-time animated bird migration map called BirdCast which shows actual nocturnal bird migration patterns based upon 23 years of U.S. NEXRAD weather radar surveillance observations. Only recently has the magnitude of nocturnal migration been realized, with many species flying great distances at night at altitudes dictated by species and weather conditions. As wind farms continue to be built and expanded without proper oversight concerning their locations, millions of birds and bats, including endangered species will suffer accelerated, unsustainable additive mortality rates, which continue to be hidden from the scientific community and by extension, the general public.”  On a small positive note, Lucas County Commissioners have agreed to support turning off all non-essential lighting during the migration.

 

  • In Hardin County, the Ada Exempted Village School District Board of Education has authorized legal action against two companies over their failure to remove an inoperable wind turbine on school district property.  The turbine was struck by lightning in 2016 and the developer has refused to repair it.  The turbine is inoperable and needs to be removed.  The taxpayers may get saddled with the expense if legal action fails. What about the ONU turbines? 2 out of 3 were not working in the past few years…
  • General Motors will buy 200 megawatts of wind energy from Ohio and Illinois wind farms in a move the company said will power 20% of its global energy use. The electricity will be generated by wind farms under construction in Ohio – including the 60 turbine 100-megawatt Northwest Ohio Wind Farm in Haviland – and Indiana. “They will enable GM to power all its Ohio and Indiana manufacturing facilities with 100% renewable sources once the turbines come online by year’s end, according to the company”.    Haviland is a village of about 200 people located in Paulding County.  One commenter on this story noted “Nice project but misleading. Those GM plants will need on line generators to run 24/7 because the wind does not blow all the time…and the sun does not shine much of the time around here. Since corporations are willing to buy into this type of energy, the need for tax breaks has long since passed. All the tax breaks do is give these turbines unfair competition to the nuke and coal plants that provide the back up to run 24/7, not to mention tax revenue losses to local and state governments. These nuke and coal plants won’t run forever, but they still have useful life in them and employ a lot more people that wind turbines.”    The project is under construction in Blue Creek and Latty townships.
  • Icebreaker Windpower proposes to construct six wind turbines located approximately 8-10 miles offshore Cleveland. Each turbine would have a nameplate capacity rating of 3.45 MW, resulting in a combined generating capacity of 20.7 MW. The project would include an approximately 12-mile-long submerged electric transmission line to transmit the electricity generated by the turbines to Cleveland Public Power’s onshore Lake Road substation.  A public hearing on the project is scheduled for July 19 at 6 p.m. at Cleveland City Council Chambers in Cleveland City Hall.  An adjudicatory hearing in this proceeding will begin at 10 a.m. on Aug. 6 at the offices of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio in Columbus, Ohio. Icebreaker is being aggressively promoted by a group called Windustrious Cleveland under the direction of Sarah Taylor who thinks filling up the Great Lakes with wind turbines will reverse climate change.

 

  • A mystery man from North Olmsted in Cuyahoga County by the name of Tom Schock writes a letter of support for the Dolan setback bill.  We don’t know who Schock is but he has been popping up in papers in different cities for a number of years advocating for reduced setbacks.  Schock was writing back when Cliff Hite was making efforts to reduce setbacks.  Readers should be aware that this fellow is kind of a career letter to the Editor writer and he is writing from a community that will never see a wind turbine.

 

  • A Seneca County couple writes a letter to the editor after being offered a good neighbor agreement.  The proposed contract would pay them $500 a year to waive adverse effects and comply with a confidentiality clause. They have filed a complaint with the PUCO.

 

  • The Ohio Country Journal distributed across Ohio to farmers and rural landowners waded into the setback controversy.  The reporter is a graduate of OSU and Benjamin Logan High School in Bellefontaine. Joel Penhorwood writes for the Ag community and lives on a farm in the Bellefontaine area.  In his article, Penhorwood coveys the money justification for reducing setbacks and granting PILOT echoed by Sen. Dolan and State Rep. Reineke of Tiffin. With respect to projects planned for Seneca County, Commissioner Holly Stacy is quoted saying “In order for our community to have the opportunities that others have had, what you’re hearing today is what we must do. We must have some change in the Ohio regulations for the wind industry. Otherwise that economic development can’t happen in the other sections of the state. Our county has had the local control, and we made that evident by previous commissioners putting the PILOT in place in Seneca County.” The article reinforces Dolan’s misguided belief that the ability to grant PILOT constitutes local control of wind development.

 

  • In Seneca County, the County Commissioners continue to hear from residents opposed to industrial wind development that would destroy their community and create safety issues. They were joined in their opposition by firefighters concerned about the ability of medical helicopters to reach people living near the turbines in the event of emergency. Again, instead of addressing the concerns of the people, Apex manager Dalton Carr defaulted to the money that could be generated saying “the area would realize at least $90 million in revenues, even if the devices don’t operate.” 

 

  • American Electric Power (AEP) expects to learn the fate of its 2GW Wind Catcher project by the end of June, later than it had hoped, although chief executive Nicholas Akins insists the wind farm could still be built in time to meet the production tax credit’s (PTC) deadline. Wind Catcher faces lengthening odds, not least because any further delays could make it difficult to build the 800-turbine wind farm by the end of 2020, in time to lock in the full PTC. Wind Catcher, among the largest advanced-stage wind projects in the world, would be built in the Oklahoma panhandle, and deliver power to AEP customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. GE Renewable Energy is the turbine supplier.

 

  • The Natural Resources Defense Council makes clear that the only acceptable energy policy for Ohio is full wind and solar.  They want clean nuclear energy phased out and they want gas shut down while bombarding the state with renewables.  NRDC even takes a shot at property line setbacks knowing that their plan is a non-starter with safe setbacks.

 

  • In sharp contrast to the left-wing Natural Resources Defense Council’s blather stands the reality of energy development on the eastern side of the state. It’s a signature of where growth in new energy will develop in America and what it will look like. This section of northeastern Ohio and western Pennsylvania – with its abundance of natural gas from the Utica and Marcellus shales – has emerged as the fulcrum for the industry’s future.” “What attracts power generation projects to Ohio is the abundance of low-cost natural gas derived from the Utica and Marcellus shale plays. Across Ohio, 11 new combined-cycle electrical generation plants worth an estimated $10.5 billion are either recently completed, under construction or in the planning or permit stages. These plants will provide meaningful, reliable power in an area of the state familiar with power production.  These plants will not be spread across thousands and thousands of acres of rural Ohio benefiting a few and destroying the landscape for precious little more than public $ubsidie$.

 

  • In Indiana, the Farm Bureau recently sent out membership information identifying counties with the highest membership numbers. Four out of five of counties with the highest % of members either fought or are fighting wind projects. Indiana wind warriors think It is time to send the Farm Bureau a message. In Fulton County, many members of the Fulton County Property Rights group did not renew their membership or insurance with Farm Bureau following their fight, and they let IFB know it is because Farm Bureau supports wind energy in Indiana.

 

  • In Hopkinton, NY the county commissioner equivalent body voted 4-0 to adopt a new law calling for a setback requirement of five times the total height of a turbine from non-participating property lines, public roads, wind overlay boundary, non-WECS building, farm or commercial structures or any above-ground utilities, registered historical sites and the APA boundary.  The local law requires adherence to a maximum 40 dBA at the nearest non-participating property line, school, hospital, place of worship or building existing at the time of the application.

 

  • In Oswego County, New York, local officials will provide no property tax abatement for developer Avangrid Renewables’s proposed Mad River Wind Farm“Just out of the concern for fairness for the rest of the county taxpayers,” said County Administrator Philip R. Church. “We understand that there are a variety of concerns to the impacts of the region up there.”  “Why not get full taxation if they are going to go through with it?”
  • Reflecting the urgency of reducing costs as $ubsidie$ are phased out, Buffalo NY manufacturer, Moog Inc announced it will exit the turbine pitch control system business. “Moog executives had hoped to jumpstart the wind energy business by developing a new line of more reliable pitch control systems for wind turbines. By tapping into Moog’s motion control expertise and designing new systems that used fewer components, the company believed its products would save wind farm operators money in the long run by lasting longer and reducing operating and maintenance expenses. But Moog’s new products cost more upfront, and wind turbine manufacturers, mainly based in China, were reluctant to adopt new systems that would push up the price of their turbine systems at a time when the wind energy market is highly competitive, Scannell said.”

 

  • A study by the Energy Information Administration concluded total federal $ubsidie$ for renewable energy dropped to $6.7 billion by the 2016 fiscal year, a 56 percent decline from 2013. “Though even with the decline, renewable energy consisted of 46 percent of total federal energy subsidies. U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry requested updated energy subsidy information as part of the office’s study on grid resiliency. Biofuels accounted for the largest share of 2016 energy subsidies in 2016, down from 77 percent in 2010 but up from 31 percent in 2013, largely due to the expiration of the Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit in 2011.” 
  • “TerraForm Power’s electric generation fell by 7.5% in the first quarter, after the US yieldco switched off 70 turbines at its Raleigh and Bishop Hill farms to investigate the collapse of a Invenergy-built GE turbine earlier this year.  In January, a blade at a GE 1.5MW turbine spinning at the 78MW Raleigh wind farm in the Canadian province of Ontario cracked and sheared the tower, causing the tower to fold in half. No one was injured.  TerraForm’s Stinebaugh says. “What we are seeing, though, is that within the renewable power sector, development is becoming more capital intensive – and there’s a number of developers looking to align themselves with people who’ve got greater access to capital.”

 

  • In an effort to appear fresh and informative, long time wind-industry consultant Ben Hoen and wind friends have dusted off their old “study” about public acceptance of wind facilities.  They posit “In general, we have observed that the media coverage of attitudes toward wind energy tends to be very anecdotal. Vivid stories of suffering dominate the discussion, which is often devoid of fundamental or methodical analysis of public opinion, the severity of the associated annoyances or even the extent of discontent among people living next to or near wind farms.”   Hoen’s work has been challenged for years because he threw people living within a 1,000 feet of turbines into a pool of people living as far as five miles away.  His work was diluted then and is more suspect now that turbines have dramatically increased in size.  We see this effort to drag out an old “hedonic model” to cover over the real stories of real people as shameless. But we are not surprised.  Do these folks think we lack any common sense?  Hoen also claims there is no property devaluation.

 

If Hoen and his gang would like to dredge up old reports, we can do that too.  A study from the London School of Economics places a value on the extent of devaluation experienced by property located near wind turbines due to the VISUAL IMPACT of the turbines.  Touché….

VW schools

Ohio birding

GM Ohio wind site

Ohio IceBreaker

Ohio setbacks

Ohio NRDC

NY Big setbacks

Pay FULL taxes BigWind

China makes most BigWind machines

Fed subsidies

Canada blade/tower collapse

Wind turbine objections

 

BigWind huffing and puffing all over Ohio, especially near the Farm Bureau

In addition to news reports, there are three important items to relay on Ohio wind projects:

Invenergy’s 175 MW Hardin Wind project is awaiting regulatory approvals in Virginia and West Virginia for the sale of the facility to Appalachian Power, a subsidiary of AEP.  If approved, Appalachian would directly own and operate Hardin Wind.

Union Neighbors United in Champaign County announces that (with the exception of Turbine T-107) EverPower will refrain from constructing wind turbines in Union Township;  EverPower will file an application with the Ohio Power Siting Board to seek approval to reduce the 108-turbine location design approved under the combined Buckeye I Project and Buckeye II Project to a 55-turbine location design, of which no more than 50 turbines maximum will be installed; and the UNU will not oppose the reduced project.

The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled against the Black Fork Wind motion to dismiss the appeal brought by citizens in Richland and Crawford Counties.  The case before the OSC challenges the failure of the Ohio Power Siting Board to consider a revision to the Black Fork Certificate as an “amendment”.   If the OPSB had ruled the Black Fork motion to revise its project was, in fact, an amendment of the certificate, a hearing on the project change would have been required and property line setbacks would be triggered.  Black Fork had previously been grandfathered under the old setbacks measured from homes. In seeking to dismiss the appeal, the Vorys law firm argued that Black Fork should be denied a hearing based on an alleged technical flaw in their appeal.  One June 6th, Black Fork filed a second amendment seeking approval to allow the use of the Vestas VI10 turbine model with a 2.2 megawatt capacity which has the same physical dimensions as the previously approved Vestas VI10 turbine model with a 2.0 megawatt capacity. Black Fork Wind Energy has also requested an extension of its certificate to January 23, 2020.

This court filing is worth reviewing as the FB  states:

Farm Bureau members have an interest in effective wind energy development. Along with enhancing their income, farmers engaged in wind leasing agreements want to make sure that construction activities on their property adhere to procedures ensuring soil and water conservation as well as air quality. Residents in rural neighborhoods want assurances that environmental considerations, such as setbacks, noise standards, shadow flicker, and other factors, are addressed with effective turbine placement. Area businesses want to make sure that a wind facility in the community enhances local commerce and economic development. In short, OFBF has extensive experience gathering input, addressing the needs of, and representing farm, small business, and rural residents concerning energy development. OFBF’s interest in this case is guided by policy resolutions from Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s 2017 State Policies.

 

This articulation of the Farm Bureau’s role raises more questions than answers given that they have consistently taken the side of the wind developer in every case before the OPSB.  In looking at the Farm Bureau website for the “policy resolution” which they contend is “guiding” them, we find only this:

 

Energy: Development of the state’s comprehensive energy policy continues to be a priority for Ohio Farm Bureau. Agriculture is being called upon to provide feedstocks to help produce energy, as well as accommodate generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure on farm ground. In 2017, Farm Bureau will provide education and outreach for its members. Finding ways to ensure energy lease and easement holders are provided information on project developments and advocacy in regulatory proceedings will be priorities. Farm Bureau will promote a diversified energy portfolio of advanced technologies which includes, but is not limited to, coal and nuclear as well as cost effective renewable technologies….

BigWind “noise” now an EXclusion for farmers’ umbrella liability insurance

Country Insurance Mutual Insurance in Bloomington, Illinois has added “noise” to its list of exclusions for farm umbrella liability coverage.  Noise joins a list of named pollutants.  Champaign County residents will recall when EverPower and the Farm Bureau took a busload of people to Bloomington where a significant number of industrial wind turbines are located.  There have been reports of pushback in Illinois since that time.  Country Mutual’ s policy changes may cause farmers to think more carefully before signing a wind lease. This makes greater setbacks even more important!….

We value the trust you have in Country Financial for your insurance needs.  In a few weeks, we will send your revised policy, with changes effective with your policy renewal…

Illinois Amendatory – coverage restrictions

Defininitions…

– A definition of “noise” has been added. It means any wanted, or unwanted, distracting, annoying, disturbine or physically harmful sound…

via: http://edgarcountywatchdogs.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/COUNTRY-Mutual-Insurance-Company.pdf

Ohio Renewable Energy committee has SIGNIFICANT farm bureau connections

Yesterday, the Ohio Senate members of the General Assembly’s
Renewable Energy Study Committee were announced.  We will be curious to see if Senator Cliff Hite will be as aggressive as he has been in the past in supporting the wind industry.  Hite represents much of the area targeted for wind development including all or part of Auglaize, Defiance, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Logan, Paulding, Putnam, Van Wert, and Williams Counties.  We have provided portions of their biographies (at bottom) of all Committee members and note there are significant Farm Bureau connections.

We also provide information on one of the Vorys firm’s other client’s –
Blackfork Wind being developed by Element Power, another UK based entity
which is owned by a private equity firm, Hudson Clean Energy Partners.
Hudson has offices in New Jersey and China.  A Hudson issued a press release
this week about its success in raising $91 million. One third of these funds
will support Element’s wind developments in Northern Europe.  Reading the
company’s profile, we note their commitment to “risk mitigated”
opportunities.  Risk mitigation seems to be provided by U.S. Treasury
through the PTC, local PILOT and state mandates.  We hope that the Study
Committee clearly comprehends that it is the taxpayer and the ratepayer who enhance the return on investment for these private equity players and their limited liability subsidiaries….

Element Power has requested an additional two years to build its 200MW Black Fork wind farm in the US state of Ohio, citing project delays and the prospect of a better market for wind power in a few years. Element, which is backed by Hudson Clean Energy Partners, the renewables-focused private-equity firm, received its construction permits for the 91-turbine Black Fork project in 2012.

But Black Fork, Element’s only project in Ohio, engendered significant local
opposition, ultimately landing the project in the Ohio Supreme Court. Last
December the court upheld Element’s right to build Black Fork, located in
north central Ohio.

Element’s existing construction certificate runs to January 2017, but the
developer has requested an extension to January 2019…

via Element wants Black Fork extension -Recharge News.

Ohio Renewable Energy Study Committee

1. Senator Troy Balderson (R) is currently serving his second General Assembly
in the Ohio Senate, representing the 20th District, which encompasses all of
Fairfield, Guernsey, Hocking, Morgan, and Muskingum Counties, as well as
portions of Athens and Pickaway Counties. He is currently the Chairman of
the Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources. Tapping his vast knowledge on energy issues, Senator Balderson has been
appointed to serve as the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy &
Natural Resources…
<http://www.ohiosenate.gov/committee/energy-and-natural-resources> ….
In addition to his committee leadership responsibilities, Senator Balderson
serves as Vice Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture
<http://www.ohiosenate.gov/committee/agriculture> ….
Prior to joining the Ohio Senate, Balderson served in the Ohio House of
Representatives, where he was named to the powerful House Finance Committee and also presided as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Agriculture and Natural Resources….
As part of his effort to best serve the district, Senator Balderson stays
very active in the community including being a member of the Genesis Health
Care Advisory Board, the Cattleman’s Association, the Muskingum County Farm Bureau and the National Rifle Association….

2.As a farmer, business owner and former county official, Bob Peterson ® has devoted much of his time and attention to solving the challenges facing our communities. He now brings that same attitude and drive to the Ohio Senate as he works to improve all of Ohio. Bob represents the 17th Ohio Senate District, which encompasses Clinton, Fayette, Gallia, Highland, Jackson,Pike and Ross counties as well as portions of Lawrence, Pickaway and Vinton counties.

A farmer by trade, Senator Peterson and his family are the eighth generation
of Petersons to farm in the U.S. Peterson raises corn, soybeans, wheat and
livestock on his family’s farm. He also has been active in the Farm Bureau
in a variety of leadership positions, culminating to his position as Ohio
Farm Bureau President for nearly five years He also served as a member of the budget-writing Finance Committee, the Agriculture Committee, the Energy & Natural Resources Committee and the Insurance & Financial Institutions
Committee….Peterson received his bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University, and is also a graduate of its LEAD Program, an intense two-year agriculture leadership program that features extensive experience in economics, environmental issues and state and national political processes….

3. Bill Seitz (We know he is a friend of the consumer, ratepayer,resident, so info was not added)

4.Senator Cliff Hite is currently serving in his second General Assembly as a member of the Ohio Senate, representing the 1st Senate District, which encompasses an 11 county region of Northwest Ohio including all or part of Auglaize, Defiance, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Logan, Paulding, Putnam, Van Wert, and Williams Counties. Prior to his appointment to the Senate, Hite served two terms in the Ohio House of Representatives. For the second time during his tenure in the Senate, Hite has been tapped to preside as the Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture….

5.Senator Shirley A. Smith (D) was elected to the 21st Senate District of the Ohio Senate in November 2006 after serving eight years in the Ohio House of Representatives as the State Representative for the 10th House District in Cleveland.  Senate District 21 encompasses Wards 2 through 12 and 14, Bratenahl, Shaker Heights, Cleveland Heights, Garfield Heights, Newburgh Heights, and University Heights….

Smith serves as Ranking Member of the Government Oversight Committee and sits on the Finance Committee, Criminal Justice Committee, the Public
Utilities Committee, and the Agriculture Committee….

6.Capri S. Cafaro (D) has represented the 32nd Ohio Senate District since January 2007 when she was appointed to the 127th General Assembly. Cafaro’s district encompasses Ashtabula and Trumbull counties, located in Northeast Ohio. As of 2013, portions of Geauga County have been added to her district as well….She serves on the Insurance, Commerce and Labor Committee, as well as the Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources Committee, the Joint Legislative Ethics Committee, and the Legislative Service Commission. In 2008 she was named a Friend of Agriculture by the Ohio Farm Bureau… In 2009, Senator Cafaro was recognized as Legislator of the Year by the Ohio Speech and Hearing Coalition, the Ohio Farmer’s Union, AMVETS Department of Ohio, and Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers’ Association and the Soybean Association for her leadership and support of Ohio’s bio products industry and Ohio agriculture….